CHRISTMAS DAY 25 December 2015. Two good rescues: 4 kittens & Monique with her surviving 6 puppies, born on Christmas Day

SADNESS AND RESCUE ON CHRISTMAS DAY 25 December 2015. "UNTIL HE EXTENDS THE CIRCLE OF HIS COMPASSION TO ALL LIVING THINGS, MAN WILL NOT HIMSELF FIND PEACE." Albert Schweitzer: Philosophy of Civilisation. Morris, who is one of our Kennel Assistants at Adopt-a-Pet alerted us to the plight of a mother dog whose owner had died. On Christmas Day, the mom dog whom we have since named Michelle, had given birth to 10 beautiful puppies in the gutter of a very busy road outside an informal settlement. Our usual helper could not be reached and the police could not help. The neighbour of the owner of Monique who had recently died, did not want Monique and her puppies to be anywhere near her home and chased her into the busy street where she gave birth. We managed to rescue Monique and her surviving six puppies on Boxing Day but sadly by the time our helpers arrived at the scene, four puppies had already died from dehydration and from the heat of the sun. The very stressed mother dog could not find a safe place for her puppies and for herself and four of their little bodies were found dead in a gutter. We owe Morris and his helper George a very big thank you for alerting us to their sad dilemma. Our website photo under "dogs" features Monique and her remaining 6 puppies just after they arrived at our shelter. We made up a comfortable bed for them with new polar fleece blankets in a cool enclosure, where Monique collapsed from her terrible ordeal and fell into a deep sleep. She was oblivious of her 6 surviving puppies who crowded around her searching for her teats to suckle and to quench their thirst. We left out a large bowl of tasty nutritious food and fresh water for Monique which she ate during the course of the night as the food bowl was empty in the morning The following morning she was still very weak from her terrible ordeal, but was clearly feeling better. Today, 27th December 2015, all seems to be well and we hope that the improvement continues. She is a very gentle dog who allows us to pick up her puppies when we change blankets and appears to appreciate that she is now safe. PS a few weeks ago, we had already rescued 4 dogs belonging to the same deceased owner and did not realise that there were 3 more. Now that we have rescued Monique, we hope to get the remaining two dogs, a male and a female and close the book on this particular case. Adopt-a-Pet practises a "pro-life" policy . The only animals which are euthanased in the true sense of the word are those with terminal illnesses and those suffering from incurable pain with no hope of recovery, on the advice of the veterinarians who have been helping our animals for over 20 years. We urge readers to adopt a dog, puppy, cat or kitten from us so that we will have room to rescue more animals from desperate situations. Support in any form would be much appreciated as we receive no official funding or support. Monique and her puppies can be seen on our website and click on "dogs." Our 4 adorable rescued Christmas kittens can be viewed on the same website by clicking on "cats." COMMENT: Since March 2011, Adopt-a-Pet has been running two hands-on Humane Education Programmes in two high risk areas. We worked together with NICRO on a 3 year Safety Ambassadors' Programme and thereafter continued on our own. The learners who participated in our programmes have become remarkable young adults whom we hope will become tomorrow's leaders and who will promote positive concepts such as compassion and empathy towards all life forms, whether towards the creatures which inhabit our troubled world as well as towards our fellow human beings. Until hands-on Humane Education is recognised by politicians and decision makers as an invaluable tool in reducing violence, incidents such as that of Michelle and her puppies plus indifference towards the suffering of our fellow human beings will continue unabated. The implementation of Humane Education by teaching and inspiring respect for all life has sadly not yet been recognised in South Africa as an essential ingredient of any civilised society. Our aim is to establish a pilot project in the form of a Humane Education facility, incorporating components such as our animal rescue and adoption work, a Humane Education component, a library/media/ study/information centre, plus sport and job creation components to keep young people off the streets. We hope to hear from interested persons to help us make this dream a reality. Phone us on 021 465-4560 or sms 074 5199600. Thank you for reading this.