A Romanian, Elena Daniela, wanted to do something for the stray dogs wandering the streets of her city.
Elena first started her dog rescue journey soon after graduating in 1998. Her first rescue was a German Shepherd, Printz, who was being used in an illegal dogfighting ring. The dog didn’t trust humans due to the abuse that he had suffered. Elena also used to find it difficult to handle the pooch in crowded areas because the dog had become aggressive due to the training that he had gotten.
Elena raised the dog in her apartment in Galati, where she lived with her parents. Elena is still a resident of Galati, where the population of stray dogs has reached around 15,000. According to Romania’s official statistics, Romania’s stray dog population has reached millions — and Elena wants to do something about it.
To help the animals, Elana founded a non-profit organization in Galati in 2006. Prior to the foundation of the organization, Elena used to work with volunteers to achieve her mission, but after the formation of the organization, she hired staff to do the work.
When Elena started the organization, she had a lot of debt at the vet. She had been taking all the stray dog she found to the local veterinary clinic. Printz also wasn’t very accepting of the other dog that Elena would bring home, so she knew that she would have to build a shelter.
To begin with, Elena started learning English so that she could collaborate with people internationally. She didn’t know anything about computers and even had no clue where the start button was, but she got herself to learn about them in internet cafes.
Now Elena’s charity has two animal shelters and has the capacity to care for 650 dogs at a time.
Image source: ROLDA via Rover