August 27, 2012, Taiyuan - Love Home is the only dog refuge for wandering dogs in Taiyuan, capital of Shanxi Province in North China. The dog refuge is sponsored, financed and maintained by volunteering Chinese dog lovers around the country. Currently the dogs shelter is trapped in dilemma. Although everyday volunteers and dog lovers around the country come to Love Home to help look after the homeless dogs, the situation is still deteriorating and the daily death toll is larger than 10 and it is not seldom that dog eats dog in the dog refuge.
Love Home for wandering dogs was established in October 2011 by several local enterpreneurs who are also dog lovers. Except for the 5 workers for daily maintenance, others jobs for taking care of the dogs are undertaken by voluntary dog lovers coming from the whole country.
"Since early this month, nearly 240 dogs have left us forever within only 20 days", volunteer Liang Liang said in sorrow,"At first we received only several hundred dogs, on the barn with an area of 10,000 square meters, dog stalls, animal pharmacy, dogs delivery rooms were all available."
In May 2012, the government of Taiyuan issued controversial regulations banning residents raising big or ferocious dogs. Soon after the Taiyuan police began to arrest all wandering dogs in sight. And the captured dogs were sent to Love Home. Within four months, the number of dogs taking refuge in Love Home has increased from 600 to 2000. The rapid increase of dogs soon dwarfed the forstering capability of Love Home. The lack of medicine, food, and ground causes many dogs to die every day.
"Because of lack of flour, the dogs can only have one meal per day and most of them can not fulfil their stomach. And even under this strict rationing, everyday they consume more than a dozen bags of flour which suppasses our capability", said Liang Liang, "Now the situation is entering in a vicious cicle. the rapid increase of dogs results in lack of materials, which causes the weakness of dogs in fighting against diseases. And the cross contamination and cross infection are common since dogs from different backgrounds come together in a crowded barn. And especially the infant and child dogs have died in large numbers. Since early August, more than 240 dogs have died and the highest death number in one single day is recorded to be 20 and more."
"That dog eat dog is not seldom and dog group scuffle happens every day for food", volunteer Liang Liang said, "Suddenly we have more dogs but so far we have not received any funding. The food and medicine mainly come from enterpreneurs that love dogs and voluntary dog lovers, and the daily care of the dogs is completely the job of volunteers".
"Money and the main problem we face", Liang Liang said.
On August 23, local police responded to questioning of the netizens that new dog barns would be built soon but "it takes time for the money to be arranged".
"They are friends of humans and we should not discard them. Although the situation is difficult for us, many volunteers are making efforts", a 16-year-old volunteer named Duan Ruixin said. The boy is a senior high school student in Taiyuan and he has spent his summer holiday in taking care of the dogs in Love Home.