The Ark Dog Shelter, Moraitika Corfu
Unfortunately, Greece does not have a very good reputation when it comes to animal care - a problem common to many Mediterranean countries. However, we should not tar all Greeks with the same stick. Many of them are very caring towards their pets and slowly the attitude of the rest of their fellow citizens is changing. It is partly a cultural thing, as in the past all animals had a purpose, a job to do. A fat cat will not hunt the snake or the rat!
Animal suffering on Corfu
It is also the same on Corfu, something the average tourist cannot miss, that some Greeks do not deserve their pets. Many of these faithful four-legged friends are left to their own devices. Sometimes they spend all day in the hot sun, do not have more than a two meter-rope, and do not receive the necessary attention and care. They are often left behind somewhere on the other side of the island, when the family no longer wishes to have it. Many Greeks have at least one dog.
Fortunately, there are people on Corfu that take pity on these animals. Often they are foreigners living on the island, with a different cultural attitude when it comes to animals. Even better, some Greeks now improve the social circumstances of the animals. Usually at their own expense - or by foreign foundations and organizations they take care of dogs and cats (and even donkeys!) and try to give them a carefree life. Progress is slow though as some Greeks still raise their children with the idea that (domestic) animals are utensils and you can use them when you want. That is sad, isn’t it?
Luckily, the Ark
The Ark in Moraitika tries to take care of stray dogs as much as possible. Sometimes the animals are even dumped at their premises. In most cases, a vet-visit is inevitable. Once the animals are inspected, they get their patch up, if that is possible. They get ‘fixed’ (if that is the right term in this way), trimmed and shaved, and receive all other aspects of a dog-MOT. The animal will be tested for all common problems - such as (heart) worm, fleas and other creepy creatures that they often have to deal with - and if necessary, treated and operated. Afterwards, the animal can have a fresh start and a better life.
See it for yourself
If you want to see what steps are involved working in a dog shelter, feel free to pay a visit to The Ark. Watch the patience and dedication in taking care of the dogs. Maybe you will find yourself a nice dog or maybe you know a friend that wants one. The Ark can advise you on making the necessary arrangements to have the dog transported to the UK.
The Ark Foundation cooperates with ‘Stichting Aai’ in the Netherlands http://www.stichtingaai.nl to find new homes for some of the dogs at Dutch host families. Not only do the dogs have a better life, they also make their new owners happy!
Some Dutch people think that the Netherlands have more than enough dogs and the shelters are overcrowded. That is not entirely true, according ‘Stichting Aai’. In Holland just before and during the holiday season, some people get rid of their loyal pets, rather then pay kennel bills. Outside this period, the shelters have more room for foreign animals.
You can find The Ark in Moraitika, on the Corfu Town road just after Benitses. Follow the coast road to the south of Corfu. Once you have passed Benitses you will get to Moraitika. At the end of the only tunnel on Corfu, after 100 meters – on opposite side of the first tavern on your left - you will find The Ark. Next to the tavern is a parking place.