Lisa's Dash for the Dogs
Organized by: Lisa Goddard
Lisa Goddard via Crowdrise
July 10, 2015
About me: Brown University 2014, Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Taitung, Taiwan 2014-15, vegetarian, nature & animal enthusiast
The problem: Abuse and neglect of street animals in Taiwan
As some of you might have heard from me since last fall when I arrived in Taiwan, I have been shocked by the general apathy toward animals in Taiwan, particularly street dogs. You probably know one of the things I care most about is animal rights, and the apparent lack of them here has really hurt my heart. The worst part of it is that some of the street dogs - perhaps even most of them - have "owners" who blatantly neglect and abuse them, or are at least fully aware of the dangers they expose their dogs to in letting them roam the streets. The laws against animal abuse are flimsy and especially in southern Taitung where other issues abound, mistreating animals receives very little attention (read: none). I am sure you will agree with me when I say that something needs to be done to change the fate of these dogs.
Fortunately, there are some good organizations doing good things on behalf of these animals (e.g. Animal Rescue Team Taiwan @ savedogs.org). Of course, most of them are non-profits or self-run projects (because asking the government for support for these issues tends to be unsuccessful or insignificant). My hope is that by raising awareness of this problem to friends both here in Taiwan and abroad in the US and other countries, we can raise money to support the people making the world a little better for street animals and put pressure on city officials to start taking this seriously.
If that hasn't convinced you yet, then here's what I will be doing to get your support:
Just as you know about my passion for animal rights, you probably also know that the word running wasn't in my vocabulary until recently. It is a passion I have been cultivating over the last couple years but have really taken to here in an area of Taiwan that loves the outdoors and exercise.
So to persuade you to donate, I will also be participating in running events in Taiwan. My goals are to complete a 9k and then a 10k over the next couple of months wearing a shirt that brings attention to the cruelty and abuse dogs face here (probably handmade, pictures will be posted). *All money raised will go to an organization here in Taiwan that's doing good work for street dogs (currently exploring options and comparing their work/funding/etc. - final decision will be posted and described!). They are rescuing dogs off the streets, nursing them back to health (many of them have open wounds, infections, heartworm, and other medical issues), and finding forever homes for them. This matters!*
I ask that you support my fight against animal cruelty in Taiwan by donating to my cause either as one amount, or by pledging to donate per kilometer completed. The longest I've run so far is about 7.25km (4.5mi), so the longer runs will be a challenge - as they should be, since fighting for animal cruelty here is certainly an uphill battle.
Donations of $50 - $100 will receive a photograph of me working my butt off to run my events/of Taitung & a message of thanks.
Donations of $100 and more will receive a personalized photo and message from a doggie you could be helping.
I will continue to post more information about the races and about doggie news as my time in Taiwan comes to an end. Feel free to contact me for more information about the situation dogs are facing here, where your donation will go, etc.
Thanks in advance for your support - Taiwan's precious fur babies (毛小孩）and I really appreciate it!
If you want to learn more about the terrible conditions street animals face in Taiwan and see what some activist groups are doing, you can do so here:
- ACTAsia: http://www.actasia.org/dogs-taiwan.html
- "Twelve Nights", a documentary about the plight of Taiwanese street animals: http://blogs.wsj.com/scene/2013/12/13/film-triggers-debate-on-plight-of-taiwans-homeless-dogs/
- Pet lovers march for stray dogs (2014): http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2014/05/11/2003590087
If you are interested in finding out about some of the great organizations working to help these dogs, you can do so here:
- Animal Rescue Team TAIWAN (ARTT) rescues dogs from the streets, nurses them back to health, and finds loving homes for them in the US and Canada: http://www.savedogs.org/english/index.html
- Doggie Protective Services is a non-profit in Northern California who has partnered with ARTT to find homes for Taiwanese street doggies: http://www.dpsrescue.org/adopt/taiwan.php
- Animals Taiwan has a focus on Catch-Neuter-Return projects around the island to help lower the number of street dogs humanely: http://www.animalstaiwan.org/index_en.html