Every dog lover knows how enjoyable mealtime is for four-legged family members, but what happens when there’s simply not enough money to buy food? One cage-free sanctuary in Serbia is an urgent struggle to feed 400 rescued dogs. Many days, stale bread is the only food to be found. But a Cinderella just might be underway here and we’re asking for donations to make sure these dogs never go hungry again.
Meet The Man Deterimed To Save These Dogs[caption id="attachment_1506" align="alignright" width="290"] Sasha Pejčić[/caption]
Sasha Pejčić has been rescuing hungry and homeless dogs all his life. Even as a child, he felt sorry for puppies abandoned in the Serbian woods or on the streets of the city of Nis and he would always try and sneak off to feed them. Later, as a man working full time to start a life of his own, Sasha still made time to feed homeless dogs each day on his way to and from work.
One day about five years ago, Sasha found four puppies away from a busy street because he feared that they would be next to suffer a violent end at the hands of the dog catchers or to be hit by a car. A few days later, he found another eight puppies. He bought a couple of dog houses for shelter and came back every day with food and water. People noticed this kindness and started to drop off more and more puppies. In no time at all, there were 70 little mouths to feed. And there was simply no kind way to draw the line. Each puppy and dog that arrived was more hungry than the next and looking to Sasha for food and protection from a very harsh life on the streets of Serbia. Sasha’s modest paycheck was being stretched quite thin, but there was no one else to help and he was determined not to let the dogs down.
Sasha found an empty property, a former horseback riding school, and began renting it for the dogs. The dogs were able to sleep inside in cozy beds filled with straw, the first true beds they ever had. A homeless man named Zoran, noticed Sasha feeding the puppies and he started to help too, collecting food scraps that he could find. Sasha offered Zoran a part time job looking after the weaker puppies all day while Sasha was at work earning money to feed and shelter the growing pack.
When Sasha first rented the disused riding school, it was overgrown and the roof of the stable was ready to collapse. But with the help of friends, family and a lot of hard work, Sasha and Zoran transformed the shelter into what it is today.
Today Sasha is responsible for more than 400 dogs (Yes, ALL are spayed & neutered). Several of them came in after the local pound was discovered to be improperly spaying female dogs (not stiching them up correctly) and putting them back on the streets which led to a terrible end. Many other dogs have been left outside the gates by people who can’t care for them and figure Sasha will feed them.
It’s nearly impossible to put into words the transformation that takes place for the dogs who come here. They are all throw-aways, most who have never felt the kind touch of a human hand, but all of them know what it is to be hungry, to sleep outside on a winter night and to be chased away for the crime of stealing food from the garbage. Today, the dogs follow Sasha around all day as he cleans up after them. They’re absoultely enchanted by him and can’t get enough of his love and attention…especially a private game with the hose or tennis ball.
In the beginning Sasha could buy all the dog food out of his own pocket, but as the numbers grew, he depended on donations from local abattoir and bakeries. This was a great solution for a while, but eventually they couldn’t keep up with the amount of food that Sasha needed for his ever-expanding pack. So when an Austrian group stepped forward with financial assistance two years ago, Sasha was asked to leave his job and to manage the shelter full time. He gladly surrendered his life to the daily needs of the dogs and there was a time of peace. But then, the net was pulled out from under them earlier this year when the Austrian group decided they’d like to make a change and try something new. It seems that they felt their supporters preferred more variety and they simply pulled out their funding and went off to work on another project. For two full days, the dogs went without food and Sasha’s fear for the dogs’ lives was ripping him apart.
The Harmony Fund international animal rescue charity, based in the USA, is asking for your help to grant the wish of every single dog here — the simple wish of having enough to eat. To feed the dogs every day, Sasha needs to buy about 270 pounds of kibble. The cheapest available in Serbia is $21 a bag as dog food is considered a novelty here because most people feed their dog stale bred dunked in leftovers. Sasha tries to feed his dogs a mix of meat, dry dog food and donated bakery goods. He knows that bread alone is no way to feed a dog. Thankfully rent for the property is still less than $200 a month, but food prices are simply non negotiable.
PLEASE DONATE TO THE FOOD DRIVE: We’re asking anyone out there who can help to please make a donation to help buy food. Please note, we can’t ship food over to Serbia as that is far more expensive, so we’re asking for only financial donations. The dogs don’t need much. but they do need to eat. We have a variety of quick & secure donation options available on our website including Paypal, credit card or sending a donation by mail. You can even enroll to set up an automatic donation to help buy a little dog food each month. Click here to donate
5 Ways to Donate Today
1) Single Gift Option:
Food and Care for the Dogs in Serbia.
2) Monthly Donations:
Feed & Care for the Dogs in Serbia all year long!
4) Donate by Mail
Please send a check to:
800 Main Street,
Suite 217, Holden, MA 01520