Cole Bay, Sint Maarten- Animal Advocacy Group Animal Defenders recently donated the first seven doghouses to less fortunate families and their pets to protect them against the elements. The doghouses, which were built by Volunteers as part of the SXM Doet Project, were delivered to families who are unable to provide shelter for their pets.
“We have been noticing many animals being kept on leashes outside and exposed to the elements (hot sun, rain and wind) so we decided that this would be an excellent project to both provide shelter for the animals and to create awareness that our pets are an important part of our family,” stated Mrs. Mercedes De Windt, of Animal Defenders St. Maarten.
Doghouses, or shelter for dogs, are an important requirement for dogs living in Sint Maarten’s sometimes volatile climate. Dogs can easily burn, become dehydrated or become ill if they are exposed to the elements for a long period of time. It was therefore decided to focus the project on providing shelter to pets from families who may not be able to afford a dog house.
Animal Defenders also stressed that pets, if they must be leashed and kept outside, are kept on a long leash in addition to being provided with shelter and that they are given adequate water and food. “Pets are an important part of the family and they also need affection, protection and nourishment.
We urge the population to realize these basic needs for their pets and recognize them as important members of their families. We would like to thank all of the volunteers who helped out at Milton Peters College, Caribbean Eagles and the Nature Foundation Workshop for making this project possible. And a special thanks to Leroy la Paix for helping with distributing the first set of dog houses,” stated Animal Defenders.
The organization has also started with a spay/neuter campaign where stray dogs are caught and sterilized, limiting the amount of stray dogs on the island. More information on this will be released as the program progresses.
If anyone wishes to contact Animal Defenders they can do so via their Facebook Page Animal Defenders Sint Maarten.