It was a wondrous blessings-filled day for more than 150 dogs rescued from dog meat traders, the streets and pounds last Sunday.
Veterinarians gave anti-rabies shots to the dogs at Dogs Mountain Sanctuary in Naguillan, La Union as part of the anti-rabies campaign of Top Breed Dog Meal and RODEO CLUB DMMMSU-NLUC Chapter .
The dogs were also delighted with the 20 bags of much-needed dog food donated by Top Breed, specially Boxer (see photo) who was rescued from the street.
Top Breed also gifted the sanctuary with leashes and harnesses, shampoo, and disinfectant for the dog pens.
Dogs Mountain Sanctuary was built 13 years ago by British national John Hughes and his wife Shirly Sebusa to provide a home for dogs rescued from the dog meat traders. The dogs, coming in the sanctuary in the hundreds per batch then, reached a whopping 1,000 in the early years of the sanctuary.
Their mouths taped or tied with a rope, and their legs tied behind their backs, these beautiful creatures were to be brought to a slaughterhouse. Their meat would have been sold to eateries and carinderias for dog meat-eating clients .
Most of the slaughter-bound rescued dogs have died of old age. Some are still cared for in the sanctuary, with rope marks on their noses.
When most dog meat traders started to change their modus operandi by killing the dogs where they got them and putting the dog meat under pork and chicken meat, Dogs Mountain took in dogs who lived in miserable conditions in pounds, starving to death or slowly dying from illnesses. Other dogs they took in were about to be put to sleep after their owners did not claim them from the pound.
John and Shirly also shared a passion for rescuing dogs who were hit by vehicles, or looked sick while they scavenged for food on the streets.
When John died about four years ago, Shirly was left to take care of the dogs.
Her twin sister Ashley continued to assist in running the sanctuary. Ashley has a knack for “classifying” dogs based on their personalities. She would “organize” them based on their traits per pen and supervise the caretakers.
Shirly and Ashley themselves clean the cages and cook natural food with their caretakers.
When John’s inheritance (funds he saved from his pension) for the dogs started to dwindle, the twins decided to stop accepting rescues and focused on providing the best care they can given their resources.
It has not been easy since John died.
Shirly learned to ask for help from family and friends to continue providing two meals a day for the rescued dogs.
This is why Shirly, Ashley, caretakers Justin and Elmer and the dogs and cats they take care of and love always celebrate with gratefulness every time someone or a group sends help.
Because dogs are not just dogs to these animal welfare advocates, they seek ways to always provide the care they believe the dogs deserve. This, based on the resources at hand.
To help Dogs Mountain Sanctuary, please send donations in kind to Dogs Mountain Sanctuary, Dogs Mountain lane, Bisang, Lioac Sur, Nagulian, La Union.
For donations of funds, please send to:
BDO Account Name: Shirly Sebusa
Account Number: 008610101709
Please contact Dogs Mountain through their Facebook page.