Sigmund Noels and Fluffy at Bark in the Park
The Lucky Lucy Foundation is a non-profit animal welfare centre. The Lucky Lucy Foundation got started in 2010 after the founders came across a pregnant dog tied to a railway line. They rescued her and named her Lucy. The lucky part was soon added on as she survived this tragic incident with only having to have one leg amputated. The founders then decided that they would dedicate their lives to helping other animals who needed it.
They take in homeless dogs and cats, especially those with health issues and physical disabilities. They have roughly 175 dogs, 6 puppies, 40 cats and 20 kittens which amounts to an astonishing 241 animals in their care.
They have animals of every breed and size with personalities that reach right across the board. Most of the dogs are very excitable and just crave human affection. Walking down the long line of enclosures is almost deafening as all the dogs bark at you to try to grab a moment of your attention for a head rub through the fences. The cattery, on the other hand, is dead silent except for the slight humming of purrs in the air. The cats are all gentle and lazy and purr as soon as you enter the room. All the cats are very socialized and would sit in your lap contently for hours if you let them.
When asking the fund manager, Gerda Scholtze, what the main struggles are that the organisation faces her answer was simple, money. In order to house and sustain the vast number of animals at Lucky Lucy, of whom many have special needs, is an ongoing struggle. They currently do not have a corporate sponsor and rely solely on donations from individuals, fundraising events and money from their own pockets. She explained how they host events such as Bark in the Park, which occurred this past weekend on the 10th of May. Bark in the Park was a fun day for dogs and their owners where they could go enter into competitions, buy dog related items, get their pets micro-chipped and even meet the world famous skateboarding dog. All profits were donated directly to the foundation and it was a huge success. They hope to make it an annual event.
Pooches getting ready to enter the best smallest dog contest
They also run a community initiative for people in rural areas. This initiative involves teaching individuals how to care for their animals. Every few weeks they will focus on a different community and go into the townships and seek pet owners. They will then educate the owners and provide them with some food for their pets. They do not confiscate animals unless they are in life threatening positions. The reason the Lucky Lucy Foundation chooses not to confiscate animals is because they say that they will then just get another pet and no progress will be made. They return a few months after the initial visit to check up on the animals and if they are still properly cared for, they will provide the animal and family with food. They also provide them with materials to build a kennel to show the family that they must put effort into raising their dogs. They will visit the family again from time to time and help with pet costs as well as food for the family.
The plot in Joostenberg Vlakte where the organisation is currently situated is being rezoned for low cost housing. This puts the organisation in a very fragile situation. The organisation is currently targeting their fundraising to be able to afford to purchase a plot of land. Scholtze said, “It is simply too risky to rent because if something like this happens again in the future, we won’t be able to survive it again. We can only hope we are even going to survive it this time”. The cost of having to move all the animals and structures is going to be very high. The other reason for wanting to buy land is because she says corporate sponsors will not donate funds to build enclosures on a new property if they know it is not going to be permanent.Some new born puppies in the adoption pen
The Lucky Lucy foundation is a sanctuary for forgotten pets and is in desperate need of volunteers and funds. For just R50 a month you can become a guardian angel and do your part in making a difference to a needy animal’s life.
For adoption inquires, volunteer information and donation details visit their website:
Here is a video that showcases some of their precious animals up for adoption as well as an overview from two of the volunteers that work there: