By Brenda Singleton- founder.
Animal Care Uzumlu was founded nearly 5 years ago by myself, Brenda Singleton. Uzumlu is about a 30 minute ride from the much larger and more cosmopolitan town of Fethiye. It may only be a 30 minutes drive but the village itself is like going back in time. With a slower pace of life and a slightly cooler climate, Uzumlu is stunningly beautiful but back then had issues with large numbers of unhealthy street animals.
When my husband and I first came to live in the village, we kept seeing many starving, very thin, very unwell looking dogs along the mountain road. We also saw them on the outskirts of the village. There was a large animal charity in Fethiye but they were stretched enough so I decided to set up an animal charity in Uzumlu.
I had no idea of the criticism I would get at the start! – I placed feeding centers by the side of the road to attract these animals so we could befriend them and start to get them healthy again. We then neutered them to prevent any more street animals being born.
I was accused of bringing wild animals down from high in the mountains into the village eg wild boar, bears, jackals, Lynx etc – in fact the only lynx I ever smelt was someone’s body spray!
Thankfully we have come a long way in 5 years and – by encouragement, kindness and education, as well as being very diplomatic – I now have a lot of ex pat’s and Turkish volunteers to help feed, neuter and look after the health care of about 150 animals in Uzumlu and the surrounding villages. We have the most amazing group of volunteers and a great number of supporters.
Mother and two tiny pups found in a very sorry state. ACU looked after them, neutered and re-homed.
Street animals have a right to roam freely under Turkish law 5199 . People are now very aware of this and they should only be removed if very aggressive and dangerous.
We have a dog and cat park where young animals can be held until they are old enough to be neutered and then they can also roam freely. These parks are also somewhere where we can place animals in need of medication or those needing a little extra help.
If you wish to visit either of these parks, please do get in touch.
ACU became an official legal charity in November 2018 and I am pleased that we now take our lead from the local council and chief vet and have excellent relations and support with the authorities.
Our aim is to get as many animals neutered as possible and to feed and look after the health care of animals who have no one but us to care for them.
I’m sure you know what’s coming next!
In order to provide this level of care we need rely and depend upon donations and sponsorship from local business and private sponsors. If you would like to help us carry on and expand this very rewarding work please see how you can help on our Support page
I’m afraid we still see some animals in urgent need – thank goodness we can help them with your help.