In tears, a Ukrainian man hands over his dog to a Polish rescue so he can fight the Russians

NEWS AND VIEWS – Przemyśl, Poland: We don’t have the name of the man who decided, in tears, to hand over his beloved dog to a Polish animal rescue charity just over the Ukraine-Polish border, so that he could return and fight the Russians. Perhaps he felt that he might never see his dog again. It must have been desperately emotional for him. And what a brave man like all the others who’ve had to stay and fight while their loved ones have evacuated to adjacent countries. As at 5th March, around 800,000 refugees have arrived in Poland. The number is rising rapidly.

And this is the story of both Ukrainian cat and dog owners and this rescue organisation on the outskirts of Przemysl, Poland. There appears to be some fake news going around that Ukrainians are abandoning their companion animals or even killing them. If that is true, and I have not seen it, it must have been disseminated by the Russians to undermine morale.

Dioz team and van
Dioz team and van. Photo as per credit bottom-left of photo.

I’m sure that some Ukrainians have abandoned their companion animals because the circumstances in which they find themselves are desperate. Some Ukrainians are contacting this animal shelter charity called Dioz begging them to take their cats and dogs or rabbits and hamsters in order to keep them safe as the Russians destroy Ukraine. Their FB page is headed Centrum Adopcyjne “Ada”.

So far Dioz has rescued about 100 animals. One of the workers at the charity is Konrad Kuzminski who said, as mentioned, that there has been a lot of fake news and uncorroborated stories that animals are being killed which she says is not correct.

He also said that they been involved in many rescue missions in Ukraine either from homes or from animal shelters in Ukraine.

Sadly, a lot of the animals are “in a bad way, they are sick, hungry or suffering from broken limbs. We collect every animal we find and bring them back to our shelter to be looked after,” said Konrad.

They are able to drive their van, a converted ambulance, through the Polish-Ukraine border without interruption because they have the right paperwork and I guess they are known to the authorities at the border.

The report comes from Mail Online who appeared to have a reporter at that border and they noticed the van. They noticed Konrad who was taking a German Shepherd he had rescued from the Ukrainian city of Lviv, for a walk.

They have been working around the clock as expected and Konrad has even spent the night in his van because he was caught by the curfew in Ukraine. He said that he is exhausted both physically and psychologically.

He said: “We have received hundreds of calls to help people with their pets – some people do bring them across but others can’t and they don’t want to abandon their pets so contact us.”


A reporter from Mail Online visited the centre where they noticed a veterinarian working frantically in treating a mongrel dog who had been rushed there from the border. The dog was malnourished and suffering from several illnesses and exhaustion. They thought he might not survive. Or they believed they might have to euthanise him.

Apparently, some of the dogs and other animals are in such bad condition that the best course of action is to humanely end their lives. Some animals are psychologically disturbed, they said. That’s probably due to the shocking conditions and the noise which must be terrifying dogs and cats and other animals.

Some animals are put up for adoption while others are kept safe until their owners are able to return to collect them. There appears to be an expectation that that moment will arrive. However, they don’t know when it will be and it may be a considerable time into the future. If they return at all.

PETA in the UK have strongly urged Ukrainians to not abandon their companion animals. Dioz works alongside the ADA Foundation and is asking for donations through their Facebook page which you can reach by clicking on this link.

There are some more dog rescue articles below.

Two useful tags. Click either to see the articles: Speciesism - 'them and us' | Cruelty - always shameful
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