The non-profit Clean Futures Fund (CFF) rescues hundreds of stray dogs in the Chernobyl exclusion zone in Ukraine. The Animal Rescue Project is now in its third year. CFF co-founders Lucas and Eric traveled to the area, which is mostly uninhabited apart from the roughly 3500 people who still work there, and were shocked by the large number of stray dogs living in the area.
The dogs, forced to leave remote areas in packs, have contracted rabies from wild predators, are malnourished and in dire need of medical attention, according to the CFF website.
Non-profit organizations estimate that there are more than 250 stray dogs around the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, more than 225 stray dogs in Chernobyl, and hundreds of dogs at various checkpoints and throughout the exclusion zone.
The plant’s management ordered workers to trap and kill the dogs “out of desperation, not desire” because they lack the funds for other methods, the CFF website explains. The Foundation is working to “avoid this unbearable and inhuman outcome.”
New puppies continue to be born at the power plant and are cared for by workers during the winter months. Some employees bring dogs, most of them under 4-5 years old, to the plant if they are injured or sick, risking rabies in the process.
In 2017, CFF began a three-year program to manage the stray dog population in the zone. The organization raised funds to recruit veterinarians to the power plant to spay and neuter dogs, administer rabies vaccinations, and provide medical care to more than 500 animals.
This year, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals SPCA International is providing up to $40 in donations to the 000 Dogs of Chernobyl project. People can also send postcards, care products, and private donations to people caring for animals in the exclusion zone. All information .