Do you have some free time ? why not lend a hand at SARA the animal shelter here in Lanzarote
I first found SARA when I adopted my own dog from them Luna some 10 years ago now! They are an animal shelter here on Lanzarote who do a fantastic job of looking after homeless dogs and cats till they find a new home.
Saturday morning, I joined the growing army of volunteers that give their time to walk the dogs and give them some much needed exercise and a change of scenery. The volunteers come from all walks of life and many different nationalities most being residents and some holiday makers on extended stays. Joining is easy, you pay a small 4 euro fee for the year! fill in your contact details and then you are an official dog walker ( Paseador de Perros ) and get a card to carry with you
The excellent volunteer workers at SARA are at hand to bring the dogs out to you and will always tell you any unique considerations of the dog you are taking , my first dog of the day was Rigoberta she is a mix breed and part Podenco ( Canarian hunting dogs ) they look after. She is a nervous dog from all the neglect and abuse she received before she arrived , and this was explained to me , be gentle with her and take our time as she does not like swift movements and is scared of getting close to some people .
We set of to roam the area all around , there are loads of dirt tracks and fields for them to explore , at first she was nervous of me and unsure of who I was but around 20 mins in she started to relax a little and we found some bushes and she went straight into hunting mode jumping into them looking for lizards ! it would normally be rabbits ….
After that we had great fun looking in all the bushes on the tracks and she even let me give her a little treat. At about the 45 min mark we started to head back to the drop off and collection point at the shelter. We went where she could get some water and waited away for the other walkers collecting the dogs so she felt more comfortable, after about 5 mins we were called in and went back inside, what a lovely dog she is.
We still had time to take some other dogs out and as they knew we were waiting to walk again they brought out my next dog, Wally .
Wally is a mix breed Pitbull . They say the dogs are strong ( fuerte ) if needed when they bring them out and as I was one of the few guys left then , I was a great option to give Wally his chance to see the sights! . The one thing about him I needed to watch was he didn’t like other dogs much so needed to keep our distance from any other walkers. This is easily done with some much countryside ( campo ) around the shelter . Wally had a muzzle on anyway and was great on a lead. Taking a different route than with Rigoberta we set off down on one of the small tracks and into a large field for him to look about, very different he liked to be patted and stroked and for all the strength he obviously has was clearly loving being out and about exploring.
Our time to go back was up again so we waited after giving them a drink of water, handed the dogs back … Said our goodbyes and headed for the car park.
It really is a rewarding uplifting experience if you can spare some time to meet and walk these dogs, I am sure you will get just as much out of it as they do! . SARA run a whole range of things to help raise money for the shelter and you can donate , sponsor and adopt a dog or cat , but if none of those are possible for you just spending a few hours helping out walking the dogs is a great way to help. Thank you to SARA for all the excellent work you do and the big thank you to the stars of the show Rigoberta and Wally and all the others just like them who are eagerly waiting to meet you soon !
By Craig Wilson
Please share this blog with anyone you think may be able to help with donations, adoption or walking!
Asociación Protectora de Animales y Plantas "SARA"
Ctra. Tahiche - S. Bartolome s/n
Tel. (+34) 928 17 34 17
Open to public: From Monday till Saturday between 10:30 and 13:00 .
Tuesdays also in the Evening: summer (from May till September between 17:00 and 19:00 ) (from October till April between 16:00 and 18:00 )