Archive for August 22, 2021

Esra – 27 dogs in her garden   2 comments

I met a lady this morning who, at times, has more than 30 dogs in her garden. She looks after them, her name is Esra and she has her own dog sanctuary in the village of Gökçeören a few kilometres from my house.

I have known of Esra for some time, she has often helped at the Kaş dog shelter and has been very active in street dog welfare circles for some years but I recently found out she had a lot of dogs in her own garden. I thought that she could probably do with a donation of dog food so this morning I set off over there with the car loaded up with dry dog food and bicuits.

There are various road resurfacing projects going on at the moment so it was a slow and very dusty drive but eventually I got there. Gökçeören is a beautiful old village lying in the bottom of a steep sided valley running north/south in the hills between Kaş and Kalkan. A crossroad junction in the centre of the village leads west to Kalkan and east to Kaş, turning to the north or south the road soon becomes impassable to vehicular traffic and only foot or goat tracks remain.

As you may imagine with around 30 odd dogs running around at any one time the garden is a busy place, most of the dogs get on with each other to a large degree but if one finds a bone the ownership of it is bound to be contested. Some of the dogs love to play with water and turn it into mud.

There are others who are recovering from injuries or diseases and need looking after a bit, this sort of care and fostering dogs who are waiting to go to new owners in European countries or UK are the main reasons that Esra started her sanctuary. The plight of street dogs along the south coast of Turkey is well known and quite a lot of people try to do what they can to make life better for them, I look after 4 of them at my house but there are other people who have many more than that. I’ve not heard of anybody with as many as Esra though so I though I would show her a bit of support.

I asked Esra about the dog’s stories and of course they all have one, usually heartbreaking tales of hardship, traffic injuries and abandonment by previous owners. It’s all very distressing but there are places in the world where they are treated even more badly. It came as a bit of a surprise to find that the latest one I adopted had been looked after by Esra for a while. Little Sevgi had been abandoned, run over by a car, had her right back leg and tail amputated and finally been rescued while dodging traffic on a horribly wet night in Kaş and it turned out that Esra was one of her saviours. Here is her story : https://whiskys.blog/2021/05/22/whiskys-still-here-now-shes-got-a-friend/

Like most animal sanctuaries, Esra is in need of constant support, there is only so much that any of us who care about animals can do and she is pretty much giving up her life to look after them. I can’t go as far as Esra does so I think I will continue to support her as much as I can.

Posted August 22, 2021 by cukurbagli in Uncategorized