A lovely lady named Albertina, who lives in Fisantekraal squatter camp, noticed a tan-coloured dog wandering around. She noticed her several times and was extremely upset at how she was being chased away by people because she belonged to no one. She took it upon herself to take the stray dog in. She named her Ruby…
The first thing she did was ask us: ‘please can Ruby be sterilised’ – she feels there are too many unwanted dogs and they are being neglected and hurt. Of course, we did so asap!
Ruby was very happy and her new family loved her and cared for her. Unfortunately, she started doing something that is not tolerated in the informal settlement: chasing people’s chickens and eating the eggs. Chickens and the eggs they lay are an important source of both food and income, and dogs that interfere with this often meet a sudden end.
The family lives on 2 people’s pension and the bit of househelp work that Albertina can get and they cannot afford to pay people off when their chickens are eaten. Someone also threatened to kill Ruby after she ripped a hole in their trousers while trying to protect the property.
So, with a heavy heart, Albertina asked us to remove Ruby and find her a new home.
At that time, Uitsig ARC was moving, and we had nowhere to go with her. We advertised several times for foster or forever home and no one stepped forward. Desperate to avoid more trouble, her family gave her to a family friend who promised to care for her.
Unfortunately, the new family’s version of caring for her was to chain her up with a broken kennel and no water. We were furious; Albertina was furious. We had, by that time, space for her, but now the people refused to hand her over, seeing Ruby as a security feature. Ruby was used to a good life with Albertina’s family, not being stuck on a short chain without proper shelter, being ignored and fed bread crusts. After much negotiation over many weeks, which involved strong words from Albertina to the new owner, and a free kennel and sterilisation for the people’s other dog, we FINALLY got Ruby. And then she waited…and waited…
We despaired! All that work to get her away from there and now no one wanted her; all they saw was ‘just a brown brak’. Could they not see her beautiful spirit? Her soulful eyes? Her happy smile?
People all cry: ‘somebody save them from there’…but disappear when it comes to homing them, even dogs as nice and attractive as Ruby…
Thankfully, a wonderful family had the vision to see what a fantastic dog she is and opened their homes to Roby. Albertina is so happy that ‘her’ girl has found a home, and so are we. Ruby is a gem with the rest of her life ahead of her.