the country with 3 Million stray dogs!

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Veterinarian Aurelian Stefan talks about his work with stray dogs in Romania and how important it is to sterilize the dogs.

Pictures from 04/2011

The Petition

Demand Romania either ends its Horrific Cruelty to Animals or give EU citizens their Millions back.

please click on the picture to get redirected to the BOTOSANI-page where you'll find the petition


Stray Dogs Killed in Romania; Advocates Fight Back

Jul 20, 2010 Joy Richardson:

The street dogs of Romania are hated, poisoned, beaten, stabbed, shot, run over by cars, burned, and dumped in pits to starve to death. Some who are killed have their ears cut off by people who are able to turn them in for “rewards”. Hundreds of thousands of innocent dogs condemned to death every year, their only crime is being born.

Animal advocates say the pointless deaths will never cease, as long as Romanian authorities fail to address the cause of the stray problem, and fight only the effects. Dog owners have little responsibility for their pets. Many are not compelled to identify, register, or spay and neuter them. Romanian Dog Population Grows into Millions.

The stray problem in Romania began in the late 1980s. Before the communist regime of Dictator Nicolai Ceausescu, most Romanians worked on farms with their companion animals. But Ceausescu’s policies changed agricultural Romania into an urban society complete with overcrowding and food shortages.

When communism took hold, many rural families were forced to work in urban areas and weren't allowed to take their pets with them into the apartments where they lived. Thousands of dogs were left to fend for themselves in the countryside. Since Ceausescu's execution in 1989, the dog population has grown into the millions. Stray Dogs Killed En Masse.

A law has been in place to formally prohibit the killing of strays since 2008. But the law only prevented large scale killings, such as those seen when strays were killed en masse in the streets. In 2001 the then-mayor of Bucharest launched a campaign that led to the extermination of at least 100,000 stray dogs in the capital alone.

However, a few years later the streets were again littered with live and dead dogs. It was impossible to drive from the Hungarian border to Romania without seeing scores of stray dogs foraging for food and without seeing several dead bodies on the road, according to SOS Dogs.

The World Health Organization’s “Guidelines for Dog Population Management” (Geneva 1990) and various other academic studies show that killing dogs is ineffective. Despite mass extermination campaigns by misguided municipalities the street dog population grows. 

Advocates Blame Media for Hysteria
Without a formal sterilization plan, the number of dogs has increased exponentially. Animal advocates say the atmosphere of hysteria and intolerance was crafted by the media to undermine sterilization programs.

There has been a harsh campaign against stray dogs in the Romanian media. Newspapers and television are flooded with images of dangerous packs of stray dogs roaming the streets with evil intent.

Saving the Romanian Street Dogs
Dog lovers are fighting back, including Romania Animal Rescue (RAR), which is an American organization dedicated to improving the lives of street dogs in the Eastern European nation.

RAR has set up "spayathons" throughout the country and since 2004 and has performed over 8,000 spays and neuters. RAR's goal is to sterilize 80% of the street animals in Romania as they believe this will achieve zero population growth, according to the group's website.

RAR has partnered with several Romanian veterinarians to perform the "spayathons." The operation recently went mobile when RAR was able to provide a caravan that was turned into a mobile spay/neuter clinic. The caravan is driven to villages without local vet care.

Animal advocates are pushing Romanian officials to focus on educating people about spay and neuter programs, and to hold dog owners responsible for the costs they cause to society and for the suffering they cause to animals.

Sources:, accessed July 20, 2010
romanian animal, accessed July 20, 2010
SOS, accessed July 20, 2010

Copyright Joy Richardson. Contact the author to obtain permission for republication.

Read more at Suite101: Stray Dogs Killed in Romania; Advocates Fight Back

Organized Crime & the Stray Dog Business in Romania

Cruella De Vil Would Be Proud: Organized Crime & the Stray Dog Business in Romania 


The Stray Dog Business in Romania is booming! 


Too bad the reported figures of captured and/or "disposed of" strays are inflated, public outrage over the stray "menace" is manipulated by the media, tranquillizers for putting down animals are instead sold on the black market for drugs, and in many cases the catchers are releasing captured strays right back into the country, so that they can be picked up again. Cruella De Vil would be impressed!


For example, in Brasov, although there were only 4,000 stray dogs in 2001, the dog catchers managed to "kill" about 20,000 in 8 years. 


The only noticeable result of the "final solution" was the emergence of a classic mechanism of siphoning off public money, put in place by the local authorities and animal protection services in Bucharest and many other cites and towns.


Under the pretext of the "stray's terror" generous budgets were allocated. The Bucharest dog catchers spent about 13 million EURO in 7 years. The dog catchers in Brasov spent about 2 million EURO in 8 years. 


Overall it is estimated that Romania spent between 25 and 40 million EURO on strays from 2001 until 2008. 


About 100,000 lei were annually spent on tranquilizers and lethal substances, but nobody ever checked that against the number of dogs reported caught and/or euthanized. 


These substances were bought illegally (without prescriptions), used illegally (because the dog catchers got lazy and started to catch all dogs with tranquilizers, committing two felonies and one ?) and may have even been used or sold as drugs (Vetased, the most used tranquilizer contains ketamine, which is used as a drug and is legally considered drug since 2010).


Original article published Wednesday, April 13, 2011:

Corruption in Romania

Romanian shelters: evidence of every day suffering...



Focsani shelter 2011

undercover shootage by Cristian Birdac, Romanian Journalist 

Municipal shelter in Rădăuţi

Video recorded December 2010


The dog is about to freeze to death and the other dogs start eating him while he is alive.

This happens daily in Romania in various shelters, and is pure cruelty!

The people working in the shelter do NOTHING!


Constanta shelter

Pascani shelter

Sebes shelter

Evidence of every day suffering ~ ROMANIA

visit ESDAW® to


more video links:

ROMANIA stray dogs in year 2011

ROMANIA The Killing of Cernavoda Dogs (2010) [HQ]

ROMANIA 2011 ~ Land of Cruelty for Stray Dogs [HQ]

ROMANIA …where is your pride? ROMANIA …where is your soul? 

pictures posted by a Romanian citizen on 08/04/2011

Disgraceful Romania!

more pictures by Dr. Daniel Lechner here:


Text from Daniel's FACEBOOK album:

"Dear stray animals friends

The infographics and images in the attachment were produced in order to be spread by everyone who opposes the new law proposal for mass killing of stray animals in Romania.

Here's the idea behind the strategy: all visuals compromise the reputation of Romania and the Romanian authorities.

Now that reason has failed and parliament voted for the barbaric law (partly due to corruption), this could be an effective weapon: discredit the public image of Romania in general and the key political figures involved particularly.

Please spread these images far and wide: not just on the pages of your animal rights friends: but on general sites and pages (bars, musea, public places you go to; pages of politicians; send them to the press, etc. etc.; or best: send them to politicians involved directly over mail, print them and hang them in the streets, etc. etc.).

If these heartless politicians find out their support for stray dogs slaughtering affects their reputation, this might cause them to change their minds rapidly.

There are already petitions and letters of protest circling on the internet; these images might prove to be a powerful tool in addition to these."

Yours, Dr. Daniel Lechner
stray animals friend & pr-specialist
The Netherlands 

follow the link for more pictures:


Vote for Romania

by Dr Daniel Lechner, Netherlands

1. Many Romanians, amongst which many politicians, benefit from the continuation of the stray dog problem, because it's a money making business. Companies can subscribe on orders for the stray dog management. For each dog they catch they'll receive an amount of money. Their income will vanish once the street dog problem is solved. Likewise for the big waste disposal companies which incinerate dead dog bodies. None of these companies have any interest in solving the stray dog problem.

2. Commercial companies dealing with the stray dog problem are fraudulent. Dogs are being released with an ear tag without actually being spayed or neutered. Numbers are being falsified to gain more money.

3. The definition of euthanasia: dying without pain. However it is well known that within Romanian municipal dog shelters dogs are not being euthanatized in a humane way. Cruelty against stray dogs will increase.

4. The killing of free roaming dogs doesn't solve the problem. The W.H.O. scientifically proofed, that spay/neuter is the only solution. Spay/neuter is one of the components. The other ones are: public information, education in schools, a public/private partnership, including commercial vets and so one. If one component is missing, the problem will not be solved.

5. The current amendment by PDL (Democratic Liberal Party) collecting stray dogs in shelters, spay/neuter them and euthanize them after 30 days if they're not adopted, is expensive and useless. To be able to adopt a dog from a municipal shelter a potential adoptive person must pay a tax, show his salary and must have the approval of his neighbors and of the administration of the block. It will become much easier and cheaper to buy a (pedigree) dog than to adopt one from a shelter. Due to the irresponsible behavior of Romanian dog owners more dogs will be abandoned.

The amendment proposed by PDL is unimaginably expensive. Warehousing dogs is expensive, killing of dogs is expensive, because it is endless. As long as nothing is being done on the root cause of the problem, dogs will keep on producing offspring.

6. The Romanian politicians have manipulated the media to create some sort of a mass hysteria among Romanian citizens. In the last few weeks many false articles and television footages of bite incidents with stray dogs were printed and broadcasted. In all cases stray dogs weren't involved but dogs with owners. The fear of losing jobs and income creates more corruption.

Romanian public institutes publish false statistics of bite incidents by stray dogs. The Romanian human health care system is very poor. But if a citizen is bitten by a stray dog (with or without an owner) he can claim the medical treatment at the authorities. So each injury that might look like a dog bite will be assumed as one. Statistics became useless.

7. Stray dogs can be categorized. The real stray dogs (feral dogs) are the least fertile ones, but are always the target of authorities. But the target should be dogs with irresponsible owners; their dogs are the most fertile ones and produce offspring. The target will not change with the PDL amendment.

8. It is proven authorities only catch the "easy" dogs. Friendly dogs and puppies and even dogs with owners. Some dogs which might be made aggressive by men are never caught. 

9. The amendment describes each municipality is allowed to decide if stray dogs can be euthanized or kept in shelters (extermination camps) or returned to the streets after sterilization or a combination of those actions. It's not implicating a national policy. If one city decides not to euthanize it will be overloaded with dogs from other cities which do so. Animal lovers will take the dogs to those cities and neighboring municipalities will dump their fertile dogs in those cities to get rid of their stray dogs. Increased migration of dogs will cause nuisance, waste of petrol and more pollution caused by vehicle movements.

10. Since 2008 the Romanian animal protection law only allows euthanasia in case of incurable diseases. However municipalities kept on going killing tens of thousands of dogs with cruel methods which were actually criminal offences, but so far no penalties were given. In the PDL amendment the presence of the representatives of NGOs at the activity (catching, sheltering, euthanasia etc.) of managing services is allowed only by the approval of the local council or city hall. The amendment will therefore not raise animal welfare.

by Dr. Daniel Lechner by Dr. Daniel Lechner

SPEND 5 MINUTES of your time ... NOW ... to help prevent mass euthanasia in Romania and SAVE A MILLION STRAY DOGS

YES - you can really DO something, and make a difference. And it's easy!

1) Print the poster (or make your own) (download the poster file here: or here:

2) Arrange a group of 2 to 10 people (family, friends, animal friends etc., or dogs!)

3) Grab your bikes or car and go to the nearest place name sign (or any characteristic location, that shows where you are from - e.g. Buckingham Palace, a Dutch windmill, a French bistro, a German Bierstube, the Trevi fountain, your local supermarket, etc. etc, or even your garden)

4) Show the posters, with the place name sign or characteristic scenery in the background and make the picture!.

5) Send the photo’s (before monday 25/04/2011 night 23.59) to: &

Petra Stainko will get them to Princess Maja of Hohenzollern, who's gonna deliver them at Romanian parliament!

TIP: even when you are alone, you can print the posters and go to a crowded place and ask people passing by to join in (now THAT'S a real flashmob!)

Thank you so much!
Yours, Daniel Lechner

(download the poster file here: or here:

by Dr Daniel Lechner, the Netherlands

Please read also:

Botosani: massacre of 240 dogs on May 11th, 2011

Recent facts from May and June 2011

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