Sometimes people ask us if we are in competition with KSPCA (Kenyan Society for the Protection and Care of Animals). They have dogs for adoption, we have dogs for adoption. They are based in Nairobi, we are based in Nairobi. They do animal welfare, we do animal welfare.
BUT: there is NO competition between KSPCA and TNR Trust. Although our main focus points are slightly different, we both strive for a common goal. Both KSPCA and TNR Trust aim to:
- Educate the public regarding care of animals
- Promote sterilization of animals to reduce the animal population and increase health of animals
- Make the public aware of the importance of keeping the animals up-to-date with vaccinations
So, if we are not in competition with each other, how do we collaborate?
We collaborate in many ways. KSPCA holds a yearly event called “The Shaggy Dog Show”. In 2016, TNR Trust was doing an awareness campaign called “Get Chained”, to focus on the plight of how many guard dogs in Kenya are being treated: they spend most or even their whole life on a chain, do not get water or proper food, and have little or no human interaction. Part of the proceedings of that awareness campaign, a total of Ksh 111,750 (nearly USD 1,100!!) was given to KSPCA.
Yesterday (1 Feb 2018), 2 of the TNR Trust volunteers headed over to KSPCA. 1 was a trustee who regularly goes to the KSPCA, the other was a volunteer who had never been there before. They way she describes the place will give you an idea of what an impression it made on her:
” I was completely overwhelmed. There were so, so many dogs and cats and the kennels didn’t seem to stop. It was feeding time when we arrived there, so everyone got very excited. Staff were doing their best to make sure every dog gets access to food, some were cleaning kennels, which seemed like a never-ending job. Fred, a senior at KSPCA, was able to give us the background stories to every single dog we pointed out, all of them horrendous. “Tied to a tree”, “abandoned in a forest”, “wandering around at a highway”, “from an abusive home”, etc. ” – TNR Trust Volunteer
The reason why TNR Trust went over was to take a few dogs off their hands as we had some capacity in our foster homes. Our volunteers had to pick and chose, which was not an easy job. But they finally settled for 3 dogs that had been there a few months already and that seemed a bit of a nervous nature.
So now, meet the newcomers
(NOTE: these dogs are currently not yet up for adoption. We first need them to settle into their foster home. Once they have relaxed and gained some weight, they will be up for adoption)
Pako was extremely nervous when we picked him up. He was in a kennel with about 4 other similar dogs and had been at KSPCA for a few months. We think he might have been hit before he arrived at KSPCA as he ducks whenever a hand is above his head. We also realized that, below all that fluff, he was actually quite skinny.
Pako spent the whole drive back to the foster place on Carla’s lap and, once we were away from noise (except when trying to dodge potholes on the road), he even dozed off or was found snacking on cheese in Carla’s treat bag.
Upon arrival, we put Pako and Chebet (another newcomer) into the same kennel so that Pako might get some confidence from Chebet, and it had an immediate effect. Pako was following Chebet’s example, sniffing around and exploring his new kennel.
Chebet was known to the KSPCA Staff as “Kadogo” (little one). She was in a large kennel with lots of other dogs and was pushed to the back by the other bigger dogs. But she called to us with a very cute “Rrrrruuuuw” (howl/bark) she produced.
She quickly bonded with our volunteers and loved the attention. She was very active and loved exploring the whole KSPCA office, including sniffing all the dogs and cats bums (much to the cats’ displeasure). She immediately jumped into our car and spent most of the drive to her new foster home looking out of the windows and trying to connect with Farah, who was in a crate next to her.
Farah Diba. We needed a “princess” name that was worthy of this dog’s royal looks. Farah had come into KSPCA with her litter of pups. When we were looking around at KSPCA, we hadn’t even spotted her, hiding in a corner, basking in the sun. She liked to keep to herself and didn’t utter a squeek while the other dogs were barking and playing. But she did start wagging her tail when 1 of our volunteers slowly tried to approach her.
During the drive to her new foster home, she was scared out of her wits. We had put her in a crate so that she could calm down a bit and she refused to get out of the crate when we arrived. But after an hour or so, she started sniffing around her new surroundings and her tail started wagging again.
In the coming days and weeks, these 3 dogs will be closely monitored. They will receive some basic training in leash walking and simple commands (sit, stay, etc) from our volunteers and will get a little bit more of peace and quiet at their new foster home.
Last but not least, please go and check out the dogs and cats at the KSPCA. They have probably surpassed their capacity. Check out their website/Facebook, browse through the dogs/cats that are up for adoption and go and have a look. They have a “no-kill” policy which is extremely admirable and that means that you have a big choice of dogs/cats.