It’s not all sangria, sombreros and sunshine. Personally I would never go to Spain unless I had to, nor do I buy Spanish produce if I can possibly avoid it, the reason being the unbelievable cruelty to animals that is practised in that country. I’m not only talking here about bull-fighting, stabbing donkeys with scissors and pushing them from rooftops, or shoving small creatures into clay pots and then stoning them to death.
I’m talking dogs, specifically the dogs used by Spanish hunters, the Galgo – similar to a greyhound, and the Podenco, a smaller hound.
TENS OF THOUSANDS of these gentle, sociable dogs are routinely tortured to death in the most barbaric fashion by their owners. Hanging by wire, setting on fire, dropping down wells, breaking of legs and abandoning are just a few of the ways they meet their death – not forgetting dragging behind cars. It’s impossible to get inside the mind of a human being who can treat a helpless creature in such a way, even more so when that creature has worked for and trusted that person. Actually, it’s impossible to believe that people who do such things are human beings. They’re certainly cowards – sin cojones.
Luckily not all Spanish people are sadists, and there are many working to rescue these dogs from the desperate conditions they find themselves in; and there are many groups throughout Europe who support them, fund-raising and rehoming those animals lucky enough to survive the ‘attentions’ of their owners.
French-based journalist and dog-lover Beryl Brennan took up the cause of the Galgos and Podencos several years ago, working with various rescue groups to raise money to help the sanctuaries in Spain, and to collect and rehome dogs, having adopted a couple herself. Now she’s written a book about the Spanish galgos, their origins, their treatment by their owners – the Galgueros, the volunteers who work so hard under harrowing conditions to save them, and the lucky ones who find new homes. Beryl’s book is now available as a digital download:
A print copy of the book will be available from 14th June, and you can read the first chapter here. A percentage of the cover price will go to Beryl’s Galgo Fund.
To learn more about the plight of the Galgos and Podencos, visit Bery’s website: Galgo News. There are many tails 😀 there which will touch and warm your heart.
Keep the tissues handy, and raise your hat to the people who fight the corner of the dogs, and have the courage and compassion to deal with sights and situations that many of us would find impossible to handle.
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