Abandoned and homeless animals of Sofia

Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened

Written and compiled by Odhrán Roche, edited by Scott Green, photos courtesy of Dare 2 Care Animals, Slatina Puppy Gang, and Bunny Rescue Bulgaria


Have you heard of The 1500 Dog Gang? Or the Slatina Puppy Gang? No? You should definitely consider these animal shelters if you are looking to adopt a furry friend. We say this because every day in Sofia hundreds of homeless dogs look around the city for scraps to eat. Municipal shelters have reached their capacity, so the dogs and their puppies are left to fend for themselves. Homeless puppies are born with a slim chance of survival due to disease and lack of food. Cats face a similar situation, with kittens being found poisoned by those attempting to control the population by all means. Pet rabbits are found in small cages beside bins, abandoned, after interest in caring for them was lost.

All of these situations are preventable and thankfully volunteers and animal rights advocates work tirelessly day after day to help animals in every way possible. Stephanie is one such advocate, she volunteers as a coordinator for the Slatina Puppy Gang, a group of volunteers who rescue homeless dogs, get them the appropriate medical treatment and find new homes for them. 

Kai (left) and Sherlock (right) were found on the side of a busy road, their mother could not be found. The Slatina Puppy Gang network found safe foster homes for them, got them dewormed, vaccinated, and chipped. They quickly found adoptive homes and are now living happy, healthy lives with their adoptive families.

Here’s Stephanie’s story:
Known by her Facebook pseudonym as Stephanie Frenski, she hails from France and has been in Bulgaria for the past five years. Stephanie is a cat person, however, as she was surrounded by animals as a child, she respects them all equally as much. After arriving in Bulgaria, she heard about The 1500 Dog Gang as she was looking at adopting a dog. Due to her appreciation for animals, it was only natural for her to be interested in volunteering with them as well. 

After adopting her new dog, and while volunteering at the shelter she spoke with the other volunteers and was intrigued by the opportunity of promoting the adoption of pets for the Slatina Puppy Gang. Both groups aim to find a foster family for stray animals, which can be challenging, especially with older dogs. Nonetheless, they try to overcome this obstacle by creating a circle of kindhearted adopters and believe that the cohesion of a community will help to bring down the barriers.

Foreigners and locals alike are helping a lot, but more long-term foster homes are dearly needed. The best way to help out the shelters is by adopting your new pet, but if you are interested in helping more, you can become a foster home or volunteer at one of the many shelters. By volunteering at an animal shelter you can change the lives of the animals you interact with, and you can bring the love back to these animals that have been abandoned. Giving a better and brighter future for all homeless and abandoned animals in Bulgaria.

Frida was found on the street with a swollen mouth, unable to eat. The rescue team at Dare to Care brought her to the vet and helped her recover. She is now in perfect health and lives with a foster family until she is adopted.


The above-mentioned groups are just a few of the dozens of rescue organizations in Sofia, all of which need volunteers and extra support.  For more information on these organizations and how to help, see the list below. You can also download here the file for easier access.

Dog Rescues

 

Name

Type

Contact

How to contribute

Animal Rescue Sofia

Animal shelter

E-mail

[email protected]

Website

http://arsofia.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Animal.Rescue.Sofia

 

Donate to the organization

Donate food, toys, blankets, or medical supplies

Volunteer to play with or walk the dogs

Foster an animal

Adopt an animal

Adoptions to Germany, Holland, and Austria may be possible

Приют за кучета с. Горни Богров - Municipal Dog Shelter Gorni Bogrov, Sofia

 

Dog shelter

E-mail

[email protected]

Website

http://ecoravnovesie.com/

https://www.facebook.com/ecoravnovesie

 

 

Volunteer to play with or walk the dogs (in Bulgarian)

 

 

Every Dog Matters

Dog shelter

E-mail

[email protected]

Website

https://everydogmatters.eu/

https://www.facebook.com/everydogmatterseu

 

Donate to the organization

Donate food, toys, blankets, or old furniture

Volunteer to help maintain the shelter

Volunteer to play with or walk the dogs

 

Фондация "Шаро - подай лапа на изоставените" / Sharo Foundation Give a Paw

 

Dog shelter

E-mail

[email protected]

[email protected]

 

Website

https://sharo.bg/

https://www.facebook.com/Sharo.Bulgaria/

 

Donate to the organization

Create a recurring donation

Sponsor a dog / Virtual adoption

Volunteer to transport animals, renovate the shelter or organize events

Adopt a dog

 

 

The Travelling Menagerie Sanctuary and Rescue

 

Dog shelter

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

https://travellingmenagerie.com/

https://www.facebook.com/travellingmenagerie/

 

Sponsor a dog

Adopt a dog

Contact the organization for more options

 

 

Slatina Puppy Gang

Co-ordinated dog rescue, foster, and adoption network

Website

https://www.facebook.com/groups/593095587821962

 

 

Coordination is done via the Facebook group.

Donate directly to the veterinary clinics looking after the animals, see Facebook group for current fundraising

Donate toys, leashes, beds or blankets

Volunteer to transport a dog to and from a location within Sofia, or to another city

Foster a dog

Adopt a dog

Dogs up for adoption can be met at a gathering every Saturday

 

Stray Angels Bulgaria

 

Coordinated dog rescue, foster and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://strayangels.org/

https://www.facebook.com/StrayAngelsBulgaria

 

Donate to the organization 

Donate food

Foster a dog

Adopt a dog

Contact the organization for more options

 

 

Редом с куче / Redom

 

Coordinated dog and cat rescue, foster and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://redom.bg

https://www.facebook.com/dogs.redom.bg

 

Donate to the organization

Adopt a dog

Adopt a cat

Contact the organization for more options

 

 

New Chance for Strays

 

Coordinated dog and cat rescue, foster and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

https://www.facebook.com/NewChanceForStrays

 

Coordination is done via the Facebook page.

Donate funds or supplies

Foster a dog or cat

Adopt a dog or cat

Contact the organization for more options

 

С любов за четири лапички - Ихтиман / With love for four paws - Ihtiman

 

Coordinated dog rescue, foster and adoption network in Ihtiman

 

E-mail

[email protected]


Website: here

 

Coordination is done via the Facebook page.

Donate funds or supplies

Foster a dog

Adopt a dog

Contact the organization for more options

 

Helen’s House of Hope

 

Dog shelter in Vratsa

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://www.helenshouseofhope.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Helens-House-of-Hope-157459161275076

 

Donate to the organization

Sponsor a dog

Volunteer to feed, walk or care for the dogs

Adopt a dog

Dogs can be sent abroad for a transport fee

 

 

 

Cat Rescues

 

Name

Type

Contact

How to contribute

Animal Rescue Sofia

Animal shelter

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://arsofia.com/bg/

https://www.facebook.com/Animal.Rescue.Sofia

 

 

Donate to the organization

Donate food, toys, blankets or medical supplies

Volunteer to play with or walk the dogs

Foster an animal

Adopt an animal

Adoptions to Germany, Holland and Austria may also be possible

 

Dare 2 Care Animals

 

Cat rescue

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://dare2careanimals.com/

https://www.facebook.com/Dare2CareAnimals

 

 

Donate to the organization

Sponsor a cat / Virtual adoption

Donate food, toys, cages, sand, beds, bowls or medication

Purchase from the charity bazaar

Volunteer to transport animals, create events, translate content, photograph animals or create online content

Foster a cat

Adopt a cat

 

Bulgarian Stray Cats Rescue & Rehabilitation Centre

 

Coordinated cat rescue, foster and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

https://www.facebook.com/bscrrc/

 

Coordination is done via the Facebook page.

Donate funds or supplies

Foster a cat

Adopt a cat

Contact the organization for more options

 

Фондация "Щастие за котките" / Happiness for Cats Foundation

 

Coordinated cat rescue, foster, and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

https://www.facebook.com/happinessforcats/

 

Coordination is done via the Facebook page.

Donate to the organization

Foster a cat

Adopt a cat

Contact the organization for more options

 

Редом с куче / Redom

 

Coordinated dog and cat rescue, foster and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://redom.bg

https://www.facebook.com/dogs.redom.bg

 

Donate to the organization

Adopt a dog

Adopt a cat

Contact the organization for more options

 

 

New Chance for Strays

 

Coordinated dog and cat rescue, foster and adoption network

 

Website

https://www.facebook.com/NewChanceForStrays

 

 

Coordination is done via the Facebook page.

Donate funds or supplies

Foster a dog

Adopt a dog

 

 

Other Rescues

 

 

Name

Type

Contact

How to contribute

Animal Rescue Sofia

Animal shelter

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://arsofia.com/bg/

https://www.facebook.com/Animal.Rescue.Sofia

 

 

Donate to the organization

Donate food, toys, blankets or medical supplies

Volunteer to play with or walk the dogs

Foster an animal

Adopt an animal

Adoptions to Germany, Holland, and Austria may also be possible

 

Bunny Rescue Bulgaria

 

Coordinated rabbit rescue, foster, and adoption network

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

https://bunnyrescuebulgaria.com/

https://www.facebook.com/BunnyRescueBulgaria

 

Donate directly to the veterinary clinics looking after the animals, see Facebook page for current fundraising

Foster a bunny

Adopt a bunny

Contact the organization for more options

 

 

Bat World Bulgaria

 

Bat rescue

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://www.batworld.bg/

https://www.facebook.com/batworld.bg

 

Donate to the organization

Send a signal to the team if you find a bat in distress

 

 

Дивите Животни / The Wild Animals

 

Wild animal rescue

 

E-mail

[email protected]

 

Website

http://wildanimals.bg/

https://www.facebook.com/DiviteJivotni

 

Donate to the organization

Donate supplies

Volunteer to rescue animals, take calls regarding found animals, translate content, create content, build animal houses, feeders etc.

Send a signal to the team if you find a wild animal in distress



Fluffy was abandoned at the top floor of an apartment building, Hidden in a small cage where no one would find him. Luckily someone did find him and alerted the team at Bunny Rescue Bulgaria. Fluffy was so stressed that he had stopped eating, the team brought him to the Central Veterinary Clinic to get checked out.  Now Fluffy is in good health and has found a wonderful, loving home.