A VET has spoken of her experience working to tackle the “massive problem” with stray animals in Cyprus.
Sarah Ives spent a week at the Paphiakos and CCP Animal Welfare shelter, near Paphos, where she neutered up to five cats and dogs a day, as well as carrying out medicine work and operations.
The dedicated 25-year-old, who recently joined Avonvale Veterinary Centres which has practices across south Warwickshire, carried out the volunteering in her own time.
Sarah visited the sanctuary on the Mediterranean island with friend and fellow vet Natasha Jameson, who works for Vets4Pets in Oxfordshire.
She said: “Sadly, there is a massive problem with stray cats and dogs in Cyprus. They are treated more as pests, particularly cats.
“Dogs are often bred for hunting season and when that’s over they are just abandoned. It is very sad.”
The need for good-quality animal care on the popular holiday island was highlighted by the variety of work which Sarah was asked to carry out, which also included medicating animals and even removing an eye from another animal.
Speaking about her work at the sanctuary, Sarah added: “It’s the second time I’ve visited – the last trip was just after I finished university two years ago.
“It is a trap, neuter and release scheme which is aimed at helping with the problem of stray cats in the area. They take in all sorts of animals though, so I ended up neutering some dogs too!
“There were four of us there – Natasha, myself and two final year students from the Royal Veterinary College. Between us, we were neutering around 25 animals a day.”
Both Sarah and Natasha adopted a dog from Paphiakos and CCP Animal Welfare when they first visited two years ago.
Visit www.cyprusanimalwelfare.com for further details.