News

The Rescue of Three Small Kittens

It is not always easy to tell the stories of our rescues. On the island of Aegiali there was initially a resistance to our sterilization program but we have carried on to great success.

Unfortunately there are still cats who give birth to unwanted kittens and a few days ago three small babies were abandoned in a garbage bin. By grace and good luck they were rescued by a kind man who heard their cries and brought them to our Center. Two small girls and one small boy are now safe and healthy and living in a foster home.

When they are strong and old enough to eat by themselves they will be available for adoption. Their little lives have now been saved and we wish for each one of them a safe and loving home.

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Tortuel

Some weeks ago, a young French couple vacationing in Amorgos came across a tiny blind kitten on the streets of Tholaria. They brought the kitten to our Center in Katapola and visited the kitten during the last two days of their stay. Saying goodby to this small being that they had rescued was difficult and they decided to adopt her and bring her to their home in Paris once she had recovered from her difficult time living alone on the streets.

This magnificent couple has traveled from Paris to Mykonos and now to Naxos where they received tiny Tortuel from our veterinarian. She is now living happily in Paris with her loving and wonderful new family. We are profoundly grateful for the kindness and generosity of those who help us in our ongoing work to make the animal kingdom of these islands a safe and healthy one.

Our work on Amorgos is dependent of your donations. Please help us help these helpless creatures and make a contribution today! https://tinyurl.com/Donate-AZI

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Vet Visit

Dr. Dimitris Vasalakis came to our Center in Amorgos this last weekend. Many of the island animals received the gift of his great veterinary care. Four donkeys and one turkey were given check ups and our own two dogs, Sissy and Liza, along with many of the island dogs, were groomed in preparation for the coming summer weather.

These visits from Dr. Vasalakis are vital since we have no permanent veterinarian in Amorgos, and, therefore, with full hearts, we give our sincere thanks for his great work.

Thank you Dimitris!

Dr. Manolis Vorisis

Animal Zone International and the people of Amorgos and all the islands of the Cyclades are grateful for the magnificent work of Dr. Manolis Vorisis.

Dr. Vorisis has made cats of the Cyclades famous around the world, and his standards for veterinarian surgery and animal care are incomparable. Long ago, Dr. Vorisis went out into the streets of these islands and, witnessing the desperate needs of a multitude of stray animals, decided to devote his life to creating safe and beautiful havens for these fragile creatures.

Beginning on the island of Syros, the capital of the Cyclades, Dr. Vorisis worked to transform dangerous areas where homeless cats gathered into safe and beautiful gardens, his mantra and slogan being, “The ugly shall become beautiful.”

Dr. Vorisis believes that it is important to change the way we humans see and interact with members of the animal kingdom and so he began to organize volunteers who were willing to knock on doors in the neighborhoods to talk about the ways in which it was possible to change the lives of these struggling felines.

Since 2017 Dr. Vorisis has spread his message beyond Syros and now he is the scientific director and advisor at the clinic run by Animal Zone International here on Amorgos.  His advice and support gives us the courage and inspiration to continue our fight to make a better life for the animals with whom we share our island.

During our spring sterilization program, not only did Dr. Vorisis sterilize sixty-three cats in two days, he also helped us clean and revitalize our own garden. He helped to prune our trees and plants to allow more light to enter that area, creating a welcoming, safe and beautiful haven for the cats of Amorgos.

As the good doctor says, “We must create beauty in our world.” We feel Dr. Vorisis is an amazing human being as well as an amazing veterinarian, and we are proud to partner with him in this important work.

Thank you Dr. Vorisis from all of us on the island of Amorgos!

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Spring Sterilization Program

AZI's sterilization program was a success! We surpassed our goal of sixty cats by three: the final count was sixty-three cats in two days.

Thirty-four females and twenty-nine males are now protected against producing the scores of litters that leave too many fragile kittens suffering from malnutrition and infection across our island.

Most of the cats came from the area of Katapola. Two were from Saint George Valsamitis, six were from Arkesini, and one came from Tholaria (Aegiali).

We want to thank all of those kind residents who helped us to bring these strays to our center—it was truly an all-island project.

All of the cats are now back in their home territory except for three sick ones who were too weak to withstand the operation. We are now treating their wounds with antibiotics and hoping very much that all three will soon be strong enough to bear the procedure and be returned to their home areas.

Animal Zone International along with the Municipality of Amorgos funded the cost of the vet Dr. Manolis Vorisis, his transportation, as well as the medications and surgical materials that were necessary to make this program a great success.

As well, we want to thank the lovely Pension Anna (http://www.studioanna-amorgoa.com/) for hosting Dr. Vorisis at their wonderful hotel. Thank you all!

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3 Day Spay/Neuter Program in March

 

3 Day Spay/Neuter Program Planned for March 9-11, 2018

When there are too many cats and not enough resources, the cats are at risk for a life of hardship or worse, death.

AZI is preparing for a spay/neuter weekend in March. Your generous tax-deductible donation would allow us to sterilize as many stray cats as possible to maintain the current cat population and keep them healthy.

This is an important part of protecting the animals of Amorgos. Please donate and join our efforts to create a better life for all on Amorgos. Thank you!

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Fluffy's Good News! 

Dear friends,

Fluffy, our beautiful and truly special blind cat, after staying at our Center for two years and despite being positive in FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency virus), has finally found her own home in Holland!

Mirtos Animal Project, an organization in Holland with which we cooperate, has found a new home where Fluffy will live with 2 dogs. (Her medical condition prevents her from going to a home with healthy cats.) 

Mirtos also found a flight escort for her which is great news. Animal Zone is responsible for paying for her transportation from Amorgos to the airport in Athens (boat and metro tickets), passport fees and health check up (microchipping and flea and tick prevention medicine) and carrying case. All of this will cost approximately 200 euro.

Won't you consider making a donation to help us send Fluffy to her forever home?

Donations can be made here, or if you wish to send money directly to Dr. Vasalakis, our vet, below is his wire transfer information.

Bank: PIRAEUS BANK
Ιban number: GR95 0171 3610 0063 6101 0072 331
SWIFT: PIRBGRAA
Name of the account: Vasalakis Dimitrios - Kontopidi Maria

(Please add a note: For Fluffy/Animal Zone Intl)

We are so happy for Fluffy and are grateful for our friends and supporters who wish her well. Please help if you can. 

From Weeds to Wisdom

Announcing an exotic dinner of edible wild greens, vegetables, berries, and grains conceived by poet and historian of both literature and food Luigi Ballerini, author of A Feast of Weeds, and prepared by Chef William Mattiello based on recipes of the legendary Pugliese coltivatore and cook Ada De Santis.

This benefit for Animal Zone International will pair inventive and sophisticated vegetarian dishes with literary and historical narratives ranging from Homer to Shakespeare.

Sunday, June 25 at 6pm

Via Emilia Restaurant
47 East 21st Street, New York 10010

Tickets: $300 per person ($250 of which is tax deductible); $500 for two. Space is limited; buy your ticket today!

Click the button above to pay by credit card or PayPal, or send a check to: Animal Zone International, P.O. Box 1039, Cooper Station, New York, NY 10003

And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb yielding seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for food.
— Genesis 1, 29

The Primary School of Arkesini

On Friday, March 17th, with the cooperation of our local animal welfare society, (Filozoiki Merimna of Amorgos), we visited the primary school of Arkesini to speak with the students about our Animal Zone International project.

We talked with them about the importance of adopting a stray animal rather than buying one from either a puppy or a kitten mill and we also spoke about the suffering of animals that are not treated well. . The students asked many questions and there was a sense of joy in the room as we talked together about these vulnerable members of God’s kingdom and our responsibility in making their time on earth a safe and healthy and peaceful one.

Before we left we agreed to come again in a year and we feel strongly that our work and dedication is having a real affect on the youngest generation of our island.
 

Help us help the dogs of AZI

Many of our recent posts are about our cats and our cat projects. Now we would like to tell you about three sweet dogs in our care.

With the help of the Municipality of Amorgos we are preparing a temporary kennel for the dogs who have come to stay with us.

Bob, Akira and Arangon were living in an area far from our Center. Their kennels were in serious need of repairs and so, with the help of the Municipality of Amorgos, we were able to move them closer to our Center and greatly improve their living quarters.

 Bob, one of the three dogs in our care. Click on the picture to read his story

Bob, one of the three dogs in our care. Click on the picture to read his story

The Municipality has provided us with an enclosure in Katapola where we have begun to clean the area, expand the fencing, cement the grounds and soon we will spread gravel so that the dogs will stay dry in their shelters and free from mud in the rainy season. Finally, the Municipality will give us trees and plants to help shade the animals during the intense summer heat.

The total cost of this project will be 800 euro and, since we are a non-profit organization, we rely entirely on donations in order to achieve our goals.

Won’t you consider becoming an angel to these dogs in need and make a donation to help keep them safe and healthy. Or, even better, consider taking one of these beautiful creatures, for, they are available for adoption.

We need your support. Please Donate. Even one euro is valuable to us and to the animals in our care. We are so grateful to have many online friends. If each friend gave only five euro we would be able to complete our kennel project and continue our struggle to care for the animals of the island of Amorgos.

VISIT BY DR. VASALAKIS

Dr. Dimitris Vasalakis came to work with Animal Zone International’s Center over the weekend of 4-5 of February.

Many members of our local community brought their animals to the Center for examination and vaccines and even for grooming. Also, Dr. Vasalakis examined, vaccinated and sterilized all of our cats, which meant that he had a very busy and a productive weekend.

Amorgos does not have a permanent veterinarian so these visits from Dr. Vasalakis are vital for the animals and the health of our island and we are grateful for his help.
 

 

Documentary about Aegiali Project cat sterilizations

In Amorgos we care for the health and safety of the island cats and their kittens but no animal in need is ever turned away from our center. The cats and dogs of this rocky island, the mules and horses and donkeys and goats and geese of Amorgos are all given aid and comfort by our extraordinary group of veterinarians and volunteers who even, at times, find themselves caring for a sick rabbit or a wounded hawk. Our Center is a hospital and a temporary place of shelter and recuperation. For some it has even become a permanent home. But there is so much more to do.

Will you help us keep this project alive, not only for these defenseless members of the animal kingdom, but, perhaps, also to serve as a model for other centers throughout Greece and beyond.

Please consider donating: we are in urgent need of help!

 

 

The Vaccination Program

Our vaccination program took place earlier this month, over the weekend of July 9th and 10th. It was completed successfully in spite of challenging conditions. The cats tend to hide away in the summer heat and we were only able to find them early in the mornings and late in the afternoons, but even with these difficulties over one hundred and seventy stray cats from the area of Aegiali have now been vaccinated for panleukopenia, calicivirus, rhinotracheitis and chlamydia as well as having been given pills for worming.

Many of the residents of the island have told us that there are still a large number of cats that hid so successfully we could not find them and it is our belief that from now on we should try to conduct our programs before the summer weather grows too intense.

We are happy to say that many of our island cats are now protected from the danger of viruses and we hope to inoculate the rest of their tribe when the weather cools down.

While we were out on the streets and in restaurants and hotels, many people seemed interested in learning about our work here in Amorgos and the island’s residents as well as the tourists who come to this beautiful island have therefore become much more concerned about the health and safety of the island animals.

Voula and Voulitsa

Little Voulitsa was living with her mother, Voula, and her three siblings, in an area where there had been serious outbreaks of disease and infection.

Only Voulitsa and her mother were found alive when we reached them and, as you can see in the photographs that we have included below, they were both very close to death. After an intense period of care and treatment in our facility both the mother and daughter have not only survived but have each recovered their health and strength.

Voula has now been released back into her home area after having been spayed but we felt that we could not allow Voulitsa to return with her mother since the area is extremely dangerous for young kittens. Chickens and ducks and cats are all kept together in a small yard by a woman who has consistently refused our help with sterilizations and medications, which means that Voulitsa has remained with us at our center.  

Voulitsa has put on weight and has now become an active and very playful kitten but we must continue treatment in the hope of saving one of her eyes. Soon she will need a foster home while waiting for the family that we hope will come to adopt this small girl and give her a safe and loving home—the miracle that we want for all of these animals who are brought to us in their great need.

Angel

One early morning in June of this year, a woman who works in a café in the central square of Katapola called our center to tell us that the café cat, who only the night before had been healthy and full of life, was now desperately ill.

Litsa, our coordinator, went to the café at once and saw that the cat was not only covered with a caustic liquid of some kind but that in trying to clean himself he had swallowed much of the toxins and his life was clearly in danger.

At the center we began to clean him and, when the room filled with the smell of lime, we realized that he must have somehow have fallen into a vat of that very corrosive liquid.

We immediately treated him with a course of antibiotics, cortisone, painkillers and creams but he was unable to eat and had developed a high fever. The wounds were severe and we had little hope for his survival but day by day he began to improve and so we gave him the name of Angel.

It took a month of treatment but Angel has now returned to being the handsome boy that he was before the accident. A few of the wounds remain but new hair has begun to grow and his appetite has returned. 

Once Angel’s wounds have healed completely and his fur has grown thick, he will be driven to the central square of Katapola where the sweet lady who has fed him since he was a kitten is waiting for his return.