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A Multiplying Problem

It's getting harder to go for a peaceful walk with our friendly street hounds. All around our neighbourhood the number of street dogs seems to have shot up over the past few months. This morning we passed a pack of twenty near the park.
Most of these dogs are young and have appeared over the last six months. I suspect the very mild winter we have had has something to do with it since more of the pups born recently have survived. Those dogs that have survived long enough to start breeding also have strong immune systems and are probably passing that on to their offspring.

Something needs to be done, but shooting some dogs from time to time doesn't solve the problem. It just happens that there is a local group of Albanians and internationals who are actively trying to set up an animal shelter and clinic. I'm part of this group, so wish us luck.


albaniac said…
How is the project financed? Do you have an account where you can make donations? How does this thing work?
Selfmaderadio said…
Do you plan to sterilize them? There is a method used in plant protection: a bunch of sterilized males insects is added into the fertile population. These sterilized males compete with fertile ones for females, leading to an reduced number of offspring. May be you could try to sterilize a couple of those dogs and let them free. I don't know whether this is possible, but just a thought.
tetena said…
I agree with selfmaderadio. Sterilize seams to me like the only way for Albania!
Candyland said…
Good luck with the shelter project. Shooting these poor things is not a solution.
Good luck with the project. Please let us know if there is any way we can help.
ourmanintirana said…
Thanks all. SMR - the basic idea is to sterilise but I have no idea about technicalities of this.

The plan is to try to work with the municipality - if they have an appropriate site, for example.

The shelter would sterilise the dogs and make them available for adoption. Dangerous or sick dogs would be humanely put down.

Local staff would run it with volunteer help. At the moment we are looking to charities and trusts for funding, but the goal would be to become self-financing in the long term through providing services like a clinic, kennels or even a grooming parlour!

It is still at an early stage but I will let you know how it is going.
Selfmaderadio said…
Looks like a good plan. Viel Gl├╝ck!
Jeroen said…
In Bucharest they had/have similar problems. At first, culls were announced and some dogs were put down - then there was international outcry with B.Bardot flying in to raise a fuss, then nothing happened for a while till a few kids were mauled. Now there seems to be a sterilisation policy - though this does not solve the problem of people (incredible numbers) being bitten by dogs. Then last year a Japanese embassy worker was bitten to death by dogs right in the centre of the city and now there seems to be a more effective selection underway. There's no easy solution - but children's faces being mauled and people dying can be no excuse, and some dogs will simply have to be put down - which is more humane than letting them rip open trash bags for a living and die of nasty diseases or cold.
Anonymous said…
Please give us some link if there is any to see follow your activities...

I am from Prishtina and third year in the row we brought a group of British and Croat vet friends of mine and did some sterilisation too!

I would be more than glad to help on anything and get some possible kind of networking and use some help as well!

Thanks in advance!
ourmanintirana said…
Thanks anon. I'm keeping track of all comments, suggestions and offers and as soon as the project becomes a little clearer I will let people know what is happening and how there might be ways to help.
ourmanintirana said…
PS Anon, if you want to send me an email via the address on my blog ( I can let you know directly what is happening and put you in contact with the vet or other people we are working with here.

The same goes for anyone else who is interested.

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Welcome to Our Man in Tirana. I moved to Tirana, capital of Albania, in October 2005 and left in October 2007. This blog is a mix of photographs, reports, links, impressions and, undoubtedly, prejudices relating to the city and the country.

Since I am no longer in Tirana I am no longer updating this blog. However, there are over 300 posts covering this two year period and I hope that they are still of some interest.

So if you are curious about Albania or if you are planning to visit I hope this blog will be of value.

Petrela Castle

This is Petrela Castle near Tirana. The site has been fortified since the 4th century, but the oldest surviving parts are from the 13th century. Today the castle is a restaurant where you can enjoy lunch while taking in the views.