The welfare of horses and donkeys in Romania
The poverty in Romania is obvious even on the streets. There are a lot of working horses and donkeys although tractors and other farming equipment is getting more common. The welfare of the equines vary a lot depending on where in Romania you are - horses in for example Transylvania are much better cared for than in Dobrogea, a poor area where Save the Dogs is working. In addition, farmers' horses are often kept in better condition than the horses owned by gypsies.
Save the Dogs was founded to help the country's stray dogs, but for an animal lover, it is impossible to completely shut ones eyes towards the suffering of any animal. In Romania the equines are in a very difficult position as they are used widely as working animals or for transportation. Their owners are uneducated and the labor is extremely hard.
Many families are completely dependant on their horse or donkey for survival. It is a huge paradox that way too often people don't seem to understand the fact that if the horse or donkey is looked after properly, it will be able to work harder and for a longer period of time. But as always, when people are trying to survive poverty, the animals are the first to suffer. During the last few years the price of food has increased noticeably, which leads to people simply dumping their animals before the winter to save the money they would otherwise have spend on feeding them. They buy a new horse or donkey in the spring for a much cheaper price. The horses and donkeys facing this destiny almost always die of starvation or freeze to death.