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#1 happyjackseven

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Posted 12 March 2008 - 10:28 AM

This article is published in this weeks edition of The Leader:

What happens if you are unexpectedly taken in to hospital and your dogs are left at home to fend for themselves? If there is no one who can take them in or care for them in your absence you would like to think that there is someone, somewhere, who will take over your role wouldn’t you? Wrong. Because that someone and somewhere is Cereco in Crevillente and the service they provide appears to be far from caring, as one family in urbanisation La Marina sadly found out.

The Downer’s own two white standard poodles, Bruce and Molly. Whilst both Phil and Sue were back in the UK, their daughter Stephanie remained at home with the dogs. However, when she was admitted to hospital, the dogs’ care was also a major concern, with one, Bruce, needing specialist food and regular medication for Addisons Disease. A family friend was supposed to be looking after the pair, instead, for reasons unknown to the Downers, it’s believed he contacted the Local Police saying they were abandoned. This phone call set in motion a chain of events that has resulted in the sad death of Bruce.

As is standard and approved practice with the Local Police when they receive such a call, they contacted Cereco based in Crevillente, who are under contract from a number of Town Halls and municipalities to retrieve abandoned dogs. However, these dogs were not abandoned and simply needed some care for a few days before Phil and Sue could return from the UK.

The Cereco van collected them on the evening of Friday 22nd February, but less than 48 hours later, Bruce died. During this time, whilst their dogs were suffering in mess ridden, cramped cages, the Downer’s were in a frantic state worried about their daughter’s health and not knowing where their beloved pets were. They contacted SAT’s animal rescue in Dolores believing they had been taken there for care. Having not seen the dogs, they put the family in touch with Councillor for Animals in San Fulgencio, Mark Lewis, who immediately went in search in case the pair was wandering aimlessly around the streets. It was not until Monday 25th February that he made the grim discovery that they had been taken to Cereco and had to break the sad news that Bruce had passed away just two days after arriving there.

As a councillor, he was able to retrieve Molly from the pound. She was in a terrible condition, with a nasty gash to her leg so Mark took her to the Animal Hospital in Guardamar, they took good care of her until Phil and Sue arrived back at home.

Whilst extremely thankful for the help from Mark and the animal rescue volunteers from the K9 Club and PAWS for searching in vain for their dogs, Phil and Sue feel bitterly angry with what has happened and ask why they were taken to Cereco in the first place when they were not abandoned and why no one had looked at Bruce’s symptoms or given him the necessary medication and attention he obviously needed. “It was heartbreaking to see the state of Molly and feel all this could have been avoided. If our ‘friend’ had just been honest and said he didn’t want to look after the dogs we could have got someone there to sort them out.”

Wondering whether this was just an unfortunate, rare occurrence and in attempts to contact Cereco for comment, the ‘Leader’ did some research on the municipal pound in Crevillente and the plight of Molly and Bruce it appears, is not a one off.

There have been previous news reports on Cereco, including one in the Costa Blanca Nachrichten in November 2007 claiming it is a slaughterhouse and ‘a death row for animals.’ Indeed, with contracts for a number of Town Halls across the region, Cereco is responsible for the collection of abandoned animals and to re-home them. However, if not re-homed within 10 days they are put down. A shocking thought for many who may not realise if they lose their dog it could end up in Cereco and be put to sleep. Their policy of finding animals new homes seems to be seriously lacking. On their website – www.cereco.net – it says there are no animals currently for adoption and official figures sent to Town Halls from Cereco, state that from 2003-2006, 6321 animals were recovered, but only 1407 were adopted, meaning 4915 were euthanised.

The pound has received numerous complaints and searches on web pages come up with dozens of warnings to people on local forums criticising the welfare of the animals and the conditions of the pens. An entry on The Bright Eyes Society for Ethical Solutions website, lists Cereco as one of the worst dog pounds in Spain saying there is a “lack of hygiene, high percentage of sick animals, animals riddled with parasites, bad food, bad quality water, microchipped animals are not allowed to be adopted even if their ‘owners’ are not found.”

An entry on the Gran Alacant Plaza site pleads with people not to take animals there; “This place is in such bad condition that animals get soon ill on top of how they suffer by being in a small cage with no comfort and it is always wet and inside, no sun no light, those people need to be sued. If anyone wants a dog please send them there for the sake of the animals, the more we take away from these people….dogs deserve a better treatment.”

Whilst nothing can bring back Bruce or replace him, the Downer’s can maybe have some comfort in knowing that by bringing their story to people’s attention, others can be saved the same heartache because, as a result, San Fulgencio council is now implementing a new procedure which is believed to be a first for Town Halls as Mark Lewis explains, “Cereco weekly patrols the urbanisations collecting any dog wandering the street and a lot of people probably aren’t aware that their pet could end up in this pound, but now, I am pleased to say that the new superintendant of police and the council have agreed that from now, whenever the police are alerted to a stray or abandoned dog, they will contact myself, as Councillor for Animals before they contact Cereco. They will explain to me the case and I will then go out to the location with the microchip reader to check if the dog has a microchip and if I believe its been lost, I will then take it in to my custody or, if necessary, place it with one of the animal groups while we advertise it as lost with posters and on the Lost Pet SOS page on the La Marina info website.”

With the new protocol in place for just over a week, it is already proving successful. “50% have been re-homed or the owners found and this is all off the back of what sadly happened to Bruce, which I hope will be of some comfort to the Downers.”
Cereco says they are currently building new facilities to house abandoned animals and we can only hope that these new pens will also mean a new attitude towards the care of animals. In the meantime, campaigners and animal lovers alike, may consider a visit to the pound to rescue one of the animals to give it a new loving home and other Town Halls should consider following in the footsteps of San Fulgencio, or maybe cancel their contract with Cereco altogether.


Jack
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#2 DaveR

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Posted 12 March 2008 - 04:10 PM

It took me a Long time to reply after reading this, My hands were shaking with rage, my eyes filling with tears, and I thought what would I do if my dog/friend, was treated in this manner. I'm afraid the answer would best not to say here, least to say I would most properly be spending some time in a Spanish jail for doing the eye for an eye thing. :arracher-cheveux:

#3 DaveR

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Posted 12 March 2008 - 04:13 PM

In fact I wonder if this will get the kind of interest/ action/ reaction, as the bottom road posting.

#4 Landlady

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Posted 12 March 2008 - 08:34 PM

I think your first response says it all really Dave. I think this post will get a lot of interest, but like you, many people will feel upset and angry by what they read and don't know - or don't want to know - what to do to help. There are so many sad stories and causes in the World that if we got involved in more than a few, we could end up suicidal!

The bottom road is a safe topic - we can all have a moan, crack jokes, get riled up, or just lurk and read - but a story like the one posted here effects us more deeply, (especially those who love animals and kids) we are all shocked into silence!

As you say, if it was your dog or your friend than you would get actively involved - I think the same can be said for most people. We can only do our best for our own family & friends and if there is a bit of time and/or money left over, for others too.

what do others think?


:action-smiley-069: Don´t forget to use the like button if you like someone´s post :tha1:


#5 DaveR

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Posted 13 March 2008 - 01:01 AM

I think your first response says it all really Dave. I think this post will get a lot of interest, but like you, many people will feel upset and angry by what they read and don't know - or don't want to know - what to do to help. There are so many sad stories and causes in the World that if we got involved in more than a few, we could end up suicidal!

The bottom road is a safe topic - we can all have a moan, crack jokes, get riled up, or just lurk and read - but a story like the one posted here effects us more deeply, (especially those who love animals and kids) we are all shocked into silence!

As you say, if it was your dog or your friend than you would get actively involved - I think the same can be said for most people. We can only do our best for our own family & friends and if there is a bit of time and/or money left over, for others too.

what do others think?

Thanks Jan, who said "all it takes for evil to succeed is for a few good men to do nothing". when evil is done, to animal or man, the evil is the same, though we grade it not so.
I am not a religious man by any shakes, I wish I had the faith to believe in the judgment of god, I know from personal experience if you get on your knees all you get is sore knees, and more pain.
when the church is full of the towns folk singing the praises and begging forgiveness for their sins, the real sins are outside on the streets, in the houses, in the council chambers. The people we pay to protect us"the police", they are paid by the council, and they only do what we make them do.
The answer!, get off your effing knees, stand up, confront the wrong, the evil where ever it may be, it wont be in the church. Or will it?. Clean the streets and where ever it may be, THEN!, you can go to your church, sing some songs or what ever you do there. that at least is better than sitting in your home/bar etc and moaning and pontificating that something should be done,DO IT!. Christ!, did I just write all this bull. :angry2:

#6 happyjackseven

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Posted 13 March 2008 - 10:04 AM

Hi ,

I think one of the lessons here is to be very careful in your choice of friends ,when you leave your pets or your house keys with friends you have to be 100% confident in them.

Sadly and I may get some stick for this, I believe that there are a lot of shallow and selfish people living on the urb and many people are just TO TRUSTING.


Jack
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#7 DaveR

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Posted 13 March 2008 - 11:15 AM

Hi ,

I think one of the lessons here is to be very careful in your choice of friends ,when you leave your pets or your house keys with friends you have to be 100% confident in them.

Sadly and I may get some stick for this, I believe that there are a lot of shallow and selfish people living on the urb and many people are just TO TRUSTING.


Jack

You will get no stick from me Jack, I agree.

#8 dorsetlad

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Posted 13 March 2008 - 12:35 PM

Horrific is all I can say. As a volunteer worker for the RSPCA, any form of animal cruelty is deeply distressing. I guess it will always go on, however hard we try to educate & persuade people to treat animals humanely. I sometimes watch programmes about the American animal charities on Animal Planet. The American law deals out really stiff penalties for animal cruelty, including imprisonment. Pity the EU cannot adopt similar punishments. They are not "only animals" as some people are apt to describe them, they are God's creatures just as we are, and to some of us they are as valuable as members of our own family. (More valuable in some cases.)

Brian
It's nice to be important, but it's much more important to be nice

#9 DaveR

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Posted 14 March 2008 - 01:19 AM

I'm with you Brian, far more valuable than my family for sure,Wendy excepted. :angry:

#10 Guest_PetAuPair_*

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 01:54 AM

It's a terrible thing what happened to Bruce, any animal lover would love to put an end to this from ever happening again. But what we need is action not words. If we are to keep on saving animals from going to the pound then foster carers are needed, if there is no place to put the dog or cat then what other choice is there! Please don't sit there feeling sorry and angry, spread the word that help is needed, even if you can only foster for a week, it's better than the alternative!!
:cid12:

#11 DaveR

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 10:40 AM

Wish we could do more, as it is we are in England for at least the next two years, and the sate of the property market and general unease, could well put us in jeopardy.
I/we have always given a home to a rescue dog, rather than go through the breeders or any other method. our present dog,Sabre, was purchased from the Broom hill sanctuary(For use of a better word). we were given a tube of cream to treat what we were told was a slight eye infection. This turned out to be double entropian(?), this is a congenital affliction usually effecting this breed especially when crossed.
The eyelids turn in wards, and the eyelashes cause severe irritation and eventually infection. We had to pay fora number of operations to turn them back. The cost was in the £12/1400.00 mark.
It was obvius that they knew excactly what the problem was at the time, though we would hope this wouldnt have, effected our decision, he turned out to be a very good natured Rotty/ Alsation cross, yet an excellent guard dog, we also have a cat over years 20 old(cat years),
I give what I can to the league against animal cruelty,/ R.S.P.C.A etc, But regrettably there is only so much in the pot. We console ourselves to thinking that if only 50% of the world did that, animal rights would be in a far better state than present, especially in some country's. :angry2:

#12 DaveR

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 11:01 AM

As for the fostering, I am not sure if that is on the whole a good thing, Obviously better than the alternative, I am perhaps prejudiced by my own experiences in that, to give a subjective view. I think one answer would be to hope for a time when cruelty to an animal would be on some par with cruelty to a child. Though in many, far to many cases even that leaves something to be desired, to say the very least.devil

#13 kemosabe

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 02:49 PM


Dogs getting one back in Orihuela
http://www.diarioinf...rrera-municipal

K


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