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Latest News

Mixed news for Amstaffs

Today was…how can I put it….mixed!  On the good news front, the sun shone brightly and the event on Place Carnot was a huge success, with plenty of interest shown in the ScPA, and lots of visits from adoptees and their new families. Photos will be posted in due course, I am sure.

Now onto what happened at the refuge. Getting the bad news over with straight away, employees and volunteers said a sad farewell to Oxmo, who has gone to the big kennel in the sky. This very old American Staff (identified) was found in a nearby village and although it was possible that his owner would reclaim him, seeing the state of Oxmo, a one-way trip to the vets seemed the most likely outcome. Just a shame it had to be with relative strangers, rather than with his real owner. This is sadly indicative of the moral courage of certain individuals.

Although his time at the ScPA was brief, Oxmo touched the hearts of many people, and of course he did not die alone. Many thanks to the employees who accompanied him on his final journey.

Oxmo – RIP

Next up good news. Aiko, an Amstaff of whom we have no pictures, left for a long term foster family. This is because he is very seriously ill, despite being just two years old. He is lucky enough to have found a family to take care of him knowing that he has limited life expectancy. Huge thanks to them.


Aiko – Long term foster

Finally after almost a year Julia left the refuge. This American Staff arrived in early January and was the first dog to be put into the ScPA’s album of miraculous survivors. When she arrived she was absolutely skeletal after severe neglect; hard to imagine that she was not a stray. Less than two months later and she was a different dog, full of life and fat as butter. Yes, that is all the time it took for her to recover, thanks to the tireless efforts of the ScPA.

emaciated dog

Julia when she arrived in January

It may surprise you to know that she has now gone back to her original owner. But don’t worry, this is not the person responsible for Julia’s terrible condition; all the mistreatment happened after the couple separated. Photos taken before this show Julia to be a much loved member of the family, and we hope that is what she will be once again. The ScPA will be monitoring her progress and Julia will always have a home back with us if ever she needs it.

Fat dog

Julia 6 weeks later and now RECLAIMED

As I say, it was a mixed day, but there was a reservation and perhaps another wonderful one to come.

Adoption of puppy Texas

When puppy Ranger was adopted yesterday everyone was delighted…..apart from one poor soul, her brother Texas, who was left alone looking through the bars of the park. Yes, there is always a first and a last to leave of any litter, and when there are only two pups, it is even sadder, especially as it can be days or even weeks between the two adoptions. Not so in this case, however, as just 24 hours after her brother left, it was Texas’s turn to start her new life.

So less than two weeks after being found lost and alone in a forest, these two gorgeous pups of some 3 months have both been happily rehomed. That is quite a turnaround in fortunes for these two gorgeous pups.

Black and tan puppy


In other news, for anyone who is local to Carcassonne, the ScPA will be in Place Carnot tomorrow to show off some of the wonderful dogs who are waiting for homes. So if you plan to visit the market or maybe do a bit of (very early) Christmas shopping, why not go and say hello and meet them and some of the team. It is a great way to find out more about the refuge and the work it does at Christmas and throughout the year.

The week is far from over, and of course we are hoping there is more good news still to come.

Adoption of Ranger and a Miracle for Lazar.

Today we had the adoption of Ranger. He is one of two puppies who was found last week alone in a forest and were lucky enough to be brought to safety. A lovely black and tan lad, he is fun and friendly and everything a pup should be. He has gone to live with the family who adopted Tyron towards the end of last year, so he will have lots of canine as well as human companionship. We wish him and his family loads of happiness together and look forward to lots of news and photos.

His sister Texas is still waiting, but we hope that she too will have a new home before winter sets in properly.

black and tan puppy

Ranger – ADOPTED

Yes, the cold weather has arrived with a vengeance. It seems not so long ago that we were complaining about scorching temperatures and admiring the cold water spray system that was installed this summer. Now it is a question of hoping that as many of our dogs as possible find homes before it gets any colder. Yes, there are heat lamps in some of the kennels, but the comfort they provide cannot be compared with that of a loving home.

Lazare was about to spend his 6th Christmas at the ScPA, believe it or not. He arrived in Summer 2014, when he was just over a year old, and a few of us can even remember his arrival, which was due to a divorce. His owner promised to collect Lazare once his life was back on track, but inevitably that never happened.

Lazare was diagnosed with cancer of the toe some time ago, and the ScPA has been desperately seeking a foster family for him. It looked like this miracle would never take place. But then it did! Lazare left today with the promise of gentle walks, a warm hearth and lots of love and affection; all he could possibly need! It truly is a miracle and more than a few tears were shed, including Bénédicte, a volunteer who was active at the time and who now lives many many miles away, but who has never forgotten one of her favourite dogs!

German shepherd cross

Lazare – gone to long term foster after 5 years at the refuge

As for Gucci, no he was not adopted today, but he was reserved, which is the next best thing!

Adoption of Chanel and Angie

Today two dogs from the same family left for new homes. When I say “same family” I am referring to both their own (canine) family and their human family. These two girls were brought in for rehoming with their big brother or maybe father just over two weeks ago. As is often the case, it is the girls who have been adopted first.

Angie is the younger of the two, and she has gone to live with a long term DRC supporter, Sheila, who adopted timid little Maisie from the ScPA about eight years ago. Maisie arrived with about 2 dozen other dogs (no, that is not a typo!) in a mistreatment case, and although she is still timid, she is a far happier dog than she was back then. Losing her pal recently has set her back, so Sheila was keen to find her a new playmate, and lucky Angie was the one who caught her eye.

poodle cross angie


Second to leave was Chanel. She, like Angie, has been neglected rather than mistreated, so it is just a question of lots of love and cuddles, and we are sure that Chanel will be right as rain too.

poodle cross

Chanel – ADOPTED

Many thanks to both of today’s adopters, and if you like the look of these two dogs, please spare a thought for Gucci. He is a lovely boy and he too would love a new home. He was born in May 2011, and like Chanel and Angie is a fluffy smallish poodle cross with fabulous tousled fur. And like the two girls, he has been living with other dogs and cats, plus he is great with children.

Gucci – Still looking for a home. Okay with dogs, cats and children

We are hoping for more good news tomorrow; will that include the adoption of Gucci? Let’s hope so!


Adoption of senior dog, Djux

There was an adoption today, and as it is such a good one, we are doing a short and sweet blog, rather than wait till tomorrow when there will be more good news. Let’s face it, when the weather is like this, we all need a bit of cheering up, so why wait!

Today’s lucky dog, Breton spaniel Djux, only arrived a week or so ago. His family brought him in for rehoming as they were moving to an apartment and didn’t think that their elderly dog would be happy without a garden. Djux is going to be twelve in January, so he might well have been fine. And certainly he would have been happier with his family as opposed to being at the refuge. But ultimately if a dog is no longer welcome, whatever the reason, it is better for him to find a new home.

And to everyone’s delight, today that is exactly what Djux has! Huge thanks to his new family. We hope Djux has many more wonderful years ahead of him, and that his few days at the refuge is soon no more than a fleeting memory.

brittany spaniel

11 year old Djux – ADOPTED

If you would like to offer a home to a senior dog, you might be interested to know that their adoption fee is just €80, for which the dog will be vaccinated, identified and neutered. And as many of us know, older dogs are the BEST!

More good news is due tomorrow, so see you then!

Nervous about adopting a dog with Brexit looming?

Tonight’s blog is in response to adopters who are a bit wary of adopting a pet at the moment due to Brexit.

First of all, if you adopt in France and your pet has an EU passport you don’t have a lot to worry about. Worst case scenario is that your pet needs a blood test one month after they have their rabies vaccination. You will then have a wait of 10-14 days for the result and providing the blood test is successful you can then travel back and forward as usual 1 month after the blood test was taken.

So the procedure is:-

  1. Rabies vaccination
  2. Blood test after 1 month
  3. Travel as normal 1 month after successful blood test.

Once your vet has the results, he will stamp your pets passport. As long as you keep your rabies vaccinations in date there is no further blood test needed.

That is the worst case scenario…it could be that some agreement is made and pets travel as normal.

If you are like me and have older dogs, you may have had a blood test done before the UK entered the EU.  Surprisingly, as long as you have always kept their rabies up to date, no further blood is needed.

For those in the UK , with a Uk passport, the process is a bit longer and you will need about 4 months to prepare your dog.

Here us a successful rabies blood test result, Anything above 0,5 is a pass…this cats is 12,4!

Page 8 in the old style UK passport is where the vet would have stamped to confirm a successful serology test!







Adoption of Paco, Missy and Lost…

Well, today was certainly a busy day at the refuge. We have the adoptions of Paco, Missy and Lost and then Gaspard found a foster home!  After that tiny Fry was reclaimed so thats 5 leavers…what a day!

We will start with the youngest. Puppies Pepsy and Paco arrived at the refuge about 2 months ago. victims of neglect. Pepsy was adopted last week leaving poor Paco waiting on his own. Luckily he didn’t have a long wait and left today to live with another dog and 9 cats!

Puppy Paco has a home at last!

The next adoption was that of little Missy. Missy was found and brought to the refuge. After her 10 days pound time, she was adopted by the person who found her. I know some people will wonder why she bothered bringing her in if she was going to keep her. Well this was absolutely the right thing to do, When you find a dog it’s not finders keepers, someone may be distraught and looking for their dog! 10 days pound time gives owners time to reclaim their dog.

Missy is off to live with 2 other small dogs!

Next to leave was Lost. This is another dog who was reserved soon after arriving and has left soon after his pound time was up. Lost is off to a family with another dog so he will have a friend to help him settle in.

Lost adopted!

The next boy to leave was Gaspard, a lovely but poorly German Shepherd. He has at last found a foster home where he can have the tlc that he so needs. A massive thank you to the family who have taken this boy in!

Gaspard has a long term foster…lucky boy!

Last but not least, little Fry was reclaimed by his owners. That’s only1 night he had in kennels..another lucky boy!

Fry was reclaimed..


Happy Huskies (or A dream comes true for Nilo and Oaka)

Today something wonderful happened. The ScPA’s two huskies, Nilo and Oaka, left for a new life together!

I can’t count the number of times that dogs have arrived together and been separated upon adoption. Okay, dogs usually bounce back fine, even when they seem very attached to one another. But it is always a bit sad to see them go their separate ways. However adopting two dogs at the same time (and often from the same family) is not for everyone, and hardly ever happens. Especially when the dogs are not small and are of a breed known for being a bit difficult.

Today however the dream came true for Nilo and Oaka. They arrived together towards the end of September and today a young couple who are experienced with the breed offered a home to both dogs! There had been other people interested in one or other of the dogs, (unsurprisingly more people wanted Oaka, although she is the more complicated of the couple), but keeping them together is far better.

So tonight we say thank you to their new family and wish Nilo and Oaka many happy years ahead. Still together but in a much more suitable home.

Oaka – ADOPTED…..


….together with her mate, Nilo

There was more good news, with a very elderly dog who arrived about a week ago being reclaimed. Harry was estimated as being 15 years old, so finding him a new home would have been no easy task, especially as he is a quite a big dog. Far better that he should be back in his own home.

Fifteen year old Harry – RECLAIMED

We could do with lots more news like this, and there is still a weekend ahead for more miracles!

Adoption of Méline and Tina

Today was rainy and horrible and generally one of those days that is best avoided if possible. However life at the refuge continues regardless of the weather, and as long as adoptions happen, the mood remains positive.

Today two lucky dogs left for new lives. One of them, nine year old Tina, had only been there for a week, since being brought in for rehoming some 14 months after being adopted. Not all adoptions work out, but when it is not the dog’s fault, there is no reason why there shouldn’t be a quick turn round. Especially when a dog is small, female and absolutely adorable. Yes, everyone loved Tina when she arrived last year, and she has lost none of her charm in the intervening period.

Tina’s new mum is well known to the ScPA; as well as being a regular dog walker, she adopted Hera (also known as the Bullet Dog, for those of you with good memories) who is sadly no longer with us. Yes, Tina we knew that Tina would be readopted with no problem, but it is lovely that she has found such a wonderful home so quickly with such a devoted new mum.

small grey headed terrier


The second adoption was that of Méline. Now this girl has been at the refuge for almost a year, and funnily enough she was sharing with Fly who had also been waiting for a long time before being adopted recently. Sometimes this is the way it works; one dog in a kennel leaves and this enables the other dog to be seen more, or perhaps be seen in a different light. In any case, Méline is a lovely girl, who has come a long way since her arrival last December.

At the time she was a bag of bones and had obviously just had a litter of pups (not her first, I am betting). She was very nervous and refused to go too far from the refuge on walks, she just seemed to want the safety of her kennel, where there was regular food and cuddles. Staff and volunteers have done a great job with her, she is now a confident and (mostly) sociable girl, and everyone is delighted that she has a new home.

Many thanks to her new family and also to that of Tina.

shepherd cross

Méline – ADOPTED

If we have two adoptions on such a miserable day, imagine how many we will have when the weather improves. If it ever does, that is! Stay warm and dry everyone, and spare a thought for the dogs at the ScPA who are hoping that they too will soon be in front of a log fire.

More Fundraising in Action

It has been some time since Moira and I blogged every day come hail or shine. Now we only blog if there is an adoption or other news to pass on. Sometimes this involves a fundraising event or initiative, and such is the case today.

Many of you will know Karen Hendry, who is a great supporter of DRC and the ScPA. Sadly she lives too far away to dog walk on a regular basis, but she pops in from time to time and does plenty of sharing of posts, which is very important, especially as Karen is a busy woman with a huge number of contacts.

She has a lot of good ideas too, and the most recent one of which is designed to bring funds to the refuge over a long period. And as everyone can join in even from a distance, we thought we would share her idea here. Basically Karen produces a numbered grid on her Facebook page, and people “buy” squares, at 2€ each.  Each month a number is pulled out of a hat, and 50% of the money pledged, goes to the winner to spend on a range of Norwex products, (you can contact Karen direct for more information) the ScPA receiving the other 50% in cash. Or rather as a cheque. Isn’t that genius?

The first cheque (for October) was delivered to the refuge last Thursday, and Karen and her husband took the opportunity to walk Melba, a hunt type dog whom Karen rescued and brought to the ScPA last month. The plan is to continue with this fundraising and make the cheques a regular thing. November’s grid is already filling up. Who knows where this could end?

Here is a photo of Karen with some of the employees and the first cheque. Shame we could not get one of those huge cheques that lottery winners are given, but maybe later on. Think BIG!

If you would like to join in, visit Karen’s Facebook page (the fundraising is set to public, obviously, there is no need to request her as a friend). Pledge away and remember that even if it is not your number that comes up, you will be helping out the animals at the refuge. Let me tell you, the odds are far better here than with the National Lottery!

Hopefully adoption news tomorrow, and hopefully better weather too.