I photograph and advertise a lot of the ‘lost’ puppies that end up at Kawerau SPCA. After more than four years, I have sadly learnt not to expect anyone to turn up looking for them, apart from the odd exception.
I don’t know how people can sleep at night knowing their puppy is not safely at home.
Maybe the puppy never had anyone to get emotionally attached to it in the first place, and it was just one of a number of hungry mouths to feed. In that case, I guess it is definitely better for the animal to make it to the SPCA for the chance of a better life, outside of the town.
Kawerau has recently become a mecca for retirees from Auckland because of the cheaper house prices. It is a lovely town, with beautiful gardens, walks, lots of clubs, a free swimming pool and some nice people. It’s such a pity it’s not such a wonderful place for some of its dogs. If more people desexed their dogs there wouldn’t be so many unwanted pups wandering the streets, unloved and uncared for. There is financial help available for pet owners who are struggling financially – they just need to ask.
The pup in the photo, named 'Riley' by the centre, was never claimed. He spent several weeks in foster care before being rehomed to a family in the South Island.
What a difference a week can make.
It gave me so much joy to take Nellie's second lot of photos, Don't they just say it all?
The sad, skinny dog that arrived at Kawerau SPCA was so much happier after a week of care and good food. Named Nellie by the centre, this girl who had come from the pound, had positively bloomed,
After 11 days she was adopted out to an approved home.. Nellie's new family had come to the centre looking for a dog. They met Nellie, and fell in love.
The Kawerau community is so blessed to have an SPCA operating in the town. To not have one is unthinkable.
The hardworking group of people that are Kawerau SPCA, need all the help they can get, in terms of monetary donations and volunteers, because there are a lot of "Nellie's' out there.
Take a look at this photo.
She is one of Kawerau SPCA’s newest arrivals. I patted and stroked her before tying her lead to the pen in order to photograph her.
The look on her face said it all.
Named Nellie by the centre, this female was painfully thin, and all the bones in her ribs were highly visible. Nellie is estimated to be 1 to 2 years old.
If Nellie could have understood my words I would have told her that her ordeal was over, and she was safe now. That she was in the absolute best place in the world right now, because she would get fed and taken care of properly. She would get a second chance because the centre would find her a great home.
But she couldn’t possibly know that, and that’s why she looked so sad.
I can’t wait to see this dog put on weight over the coming weeks and watch the sadness disappear from her eyes. It will be absolutely joyous for the other volunteers too.
Another one back from the brink.
Dear Wilson & Winston
The other day I photographed the two of you at Kawerau SPCA. You were both so gorgeous, and cute, and curious. Winston, you were a bit quiet sitting in your kennel, but you loved the pats and rubs and puppy talk. I’m so glad I took the time. Took your photos too, ready to advertise you online – your only chance to get out of Kawerau, where there are so many other ‘free’ puppies available and life is cheap.
Your previous owner couldn't sell you, so there you were, a couple of pups, surplus to requirements, with a ticking time-bomb inside your little bodies that nobody knew about - parvovirus.
I got this beautiful photo of the two of you, ready to find you ‘real’ homes – ones where you would be cared for properly. Sadly that didn’t happen, because I got a call from the centre the next day to say you had parvo and had to be put to sleep so you wouldn’t suffer. I understand completely. The SPCA did the right thing – giving you a dignified and humane death.
Let's hope people learn something from your needless and untimely deaths. The importance of desexing their pets, and vaccinating against parvo. Your lives shouldn’t have been like this.
Rest in peace Wilson & Winston