The Ocean Acres Animal Sanctuary and other local sanctuaries are once again running their Barbados Refugee Project, which will see some 188 dogs being shipped to Canada to find new homes.
Speaking with members of the media on Sunday, as the dogs were being readied for their trip, Ocean Acres founder Karen Whittaker said though Barbadians generally love taking on new pets, the high number of dogs being abandoned over the last several years, in particular during the pandemic, is still a cause for concern.“People still seem to [just] abandon their dogs and we would really like that to change … we want people to think much more carefully about whether they should be having a dog or not, and if you are going to have a dog, how are you going to look after it, and to not let it have puppies because you might want one dog, but not necessarily want eight.“We need people to just think a little bit more about it. We can help, this is what we want to do,” she explained.
Whittaker said even though they are sad to see the number of dogs leaving the island, the situation had become dire, with the pets needing to find loving homes with owners who will take good care of them.“Out of necessity really, because of the unfortunate situation with so many dogs in Barbados … for me it’s kind of tinged with sadness that we have to do this, because I would very much like it that we did not. I wish that there were not so many dogs and cats abandoned and in need of our help in Barbados, and I will be the happiest person when we don’t have to do this.“But we do, and it gives these dogs a chance at a new life and a great life with families who would love them and care for them,” she said.