Center for Animal Welfare Legal Protection    
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Autonomous non-profit organization
Center for Animal Welfare Legal Protection

Part:
LETTERS FROM CITIZENS
THAT CONTAIN INFORMATION THAT HOMELESS (STRAY, FERAL) DOGS ARE ACTIVE EXTERMINATORS OF HOMELESS (STRAY, FERAL) CATS

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All these pictures were taken in Moscow during the spring and summer of 2005: most pictures were taken at the intersection of Bolshaya Filevskaya and Malaya Filevskaya Streets (near to Filevsky Park), one picture in Kastanaevslaya St., and two in Profsopyuznaya St..

         (Comment by site editor: Read about this also the Results of VTSIOM survey of homeless cats guardians conducted in June of 2005. It follows from the survey that the main cause for the death of homeless cats in Moscow is their mass extermination by stray dogs.)

INSTEAD OF INTRODUCTION:

         "I live near the Filevsky Park at present, and I like the place very much. The wood is a few steps away from the house, the bank of the Moskva River is within a walking distance: some 100 meters. The park flora, by the way, is very interesting: as one walks in the park, one is under the impression as if he is in Switzerland, a few steps farther and one is in Finland. Sometimes, when taking a stroll in the park, I ask myself a question: why should I go somewhere, when I have the entire Europe within such an easy reach
         (Yuri Kuklachev, Manager, State Cat Theater in Moscow, from an interview to the Tribuna: newspaper, May 28, 2005)

Letter from Residents of the Filevsky Park Area of Moscow

To: Director of the Charitable Society
for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals
Mr. E.A.Ilyinsky

Dear Evgeny Anatolievich!

         We, residents of the houses at Bolshaya Filevskaya and Malaya Filevskaya Streets, have been guardians of homeless cats for years.
         Over the last three years, weve had serious problems: our courtyards are visited by pack of stray dogs at different times of day: these dogs inhabit the forest-park zones Filevsky Park and Fili-Kuntsevsky Park, also they live elsewhere, the exact place unknown. The number of cats rapidly goes down towards zero, stray dogs exterminate them brutally, sometimes, they maim the cats, virtually all kittens die. Home-grown cats and small dogs also suffer. For example, during the aforesaid period the residents of our area recorded around 100 cat deaths resulting from the attacks of stray dogs.
         In many instances, we witnessed personally assaults of dogs against the cats, or received similar information from other eye-witnesses.
         We cleared away so many cats butchered by the dogs, tortured. Their intestines out, strangled and blood-spattered. It particularly hurts one, when one thinks that just the other day one fed these creatures, they were rubbing against ones feet tenderly.
         Here are only a few cases of stray dogs attacking cats. In broad daylight, a few dogs attacked a sleeping cat lying on the hood of a car. They sprang onto the vehicle to drive the cat away. When the cat finally jumped down and tried to run away, the dogs surrounded and killed it. Then, they carried the dead cat holding it in the teeth across the childrens playground, where the children were playing and some women were resting on a bench. The people shouted, were trying to throw something at the dogs. At the sight of all this, one pregnant woman fainted. Having run several courtyards with the cat in teeth, the dogs dropped it and ran away.
         In another instant, a young mother was walking with a child in a pram. The dogs crept low closer and suddenly charged at a cat sleeping peacefully nearby on a bench. Then woman, horrified, screamed and ran to drive the dogs away, having left the pram with a child unattended, only to save the cat. That time, the cat was lucky to survive.
         Something else occurred also in broad daylight: dogs drove a cat up a tree. The tree was not high enough. The dogs managed to snatch the cat by its hind foot. At that moment, a car was driving over the courtyard. The driver gave a loud hoot, which scattered the dogs, and the cat was thus saved. Otherwise, the cat would not have survived, unless it was given some treatment afterwards: its hind foot was damaged severely.
         We found out that one of the most active dog packs attacking the cats was scavenging around a cafeteria located in Filevsky Park, where the owners gave away all food wastes to the dogs. Therefore, the dogs were not hungry, and came to our courtyard to hunt for fun. Their hunt lasted a few months. We arranged a nearly round-the-clock vigil outdoors. After a while, these dogs disappeared: obviously, the owners of the cafeteria were also tired of them, as the dogs barked at the visitors and passer-by with pets all the time.
         Quite recently, a lady-resident watched at night a pack of dogs hunting a male cat. The dogs drove the cat up a tree, then hid round the corner of a building and watched. When the cat came down, the dogs immediately caught up with it and butchered it.
         Some of the letter signatories keep the rescued cats that were maimed by the dogs, in particular, there is one male cat who lost part of his flesh in the rear part together with the genitals. There is another rescued male cat: the dogs gnawed at his entire hind foot, leaving just a bare bone. The foot had to be amputated. It horrifies one to imagine the anguish these animals would have to experience had there been no people around.
         The situation is critical, indeed, especially with the advent of spring. Stray dogs multiply, no results of the sterilization program are in evidence, there are lots of puppets and half-grown dog individuals; as for those sterilized, apparently these have nothing better to do or do not care about the welfare of their litter, and are hunting cats in the courtyards. Attempts to feed the dogs are futile: they keep hunting cats. Cat guardians live as if military activities are in progress, ready to run out into the street day and night to drive away stray dogs.
         Over the last few years, we have petitioned various organizations requesting to trap stray dogs in our district without subsequent release: the prefecture of the Western Administrative District, the Unitary Customer Management Office of the Fili-Davydkovo Area and Filevsky Park Area, the State Unitary Enterprise WATS, Moscow Mayors Office. Our appeal to take an urgent action was sounded on the air by MAYAK radio station, when the Chief of the section of city fauna of Moscow Government T.Pavlova was speaking, There was no result.
         The sterilization program is meaningless. The number of stray dogs is growing. They attack people.
         People, tired of the inaction on the part of the authorities, are in despair. The cases of lynching the stray dogs that attacked pets are becoming increasingly common. They say some packs of stray dogs were even shot off from rifles by people whose pets had been maimed by stray dogs!
         Many say that love of the dogs has been superseded by hatred.
         If Moscow legislation stipulates humane treatment of animals, why does this have to do with dogs only. And, how can we talk about humane treatment, when dirty and ailing dogs are roaming the landfills and courtyards in search of food? The chief of the city fauna section Mrs. T.N.Pavlova is willing to introduce chips for stray dogs yet another project no one wants, a drain on the budget. There are reports on the building of new shelters. On the one hand, this is gratifying. Yet, we are not talking about accommodating all stray dogs there. After all, the huge numbers of stray dogs we see in the streets at present are impossible to place in a shelter. We feel, an entirely different approach to solving this problem is required: there must be no stray dogs in the streets altogether. This is what we see in industrialized countries.
         Do protect us against stray dogs and send this petition of ours to the government agencies concerned that deal with this problem!
         P.S. When this letter was already finished, in the morning of April 15, in a small front garden between the houses 49, block 1 and 51, block 1 at Bolshaya Filevskaya Street, three corpses of cats were found at a time, with typical indications that the cats had died from dogs teeth. Earlier, on the night before, guardians had been feeding these cats. The corpses were photographed. In the morning of April 19, a pack of stray dogs tore to pieces one more cat before very eyes of the people. The concluding scene of this event one of the eye-witnesses managed to photograph.
         April 19, 2005, 42 signature

ATTACHEMENT:
Application to the Wild Animals Trapping Service

To: Deputy Director General of the WATS
Mrs. S.L.Fedorova

         We, residents of the houses located in the vicinity of the rest park Filevsky Park are appealing to you to trap the dogs that are within the park compound. The packs of dogs are raiding our courtyards and houses: Bolshaya Filevskaya St., houses No 37,39,41,43,45,47,49,51, Malaya Filevskaya St. houses No 4,6,8,10,12,14.
         The dogs are aggressive and resent a danger to the people and animals, they have killed a lot of cats, are surrounding people, attack pet dogs. There is a large pack of dogs on the territory of the Constructor Stadium in a burned down building; there are other packs of dogs in Kuntsevo Park of Culture and Rest, too.
         (Comment by site editor: We wish to express our sympathy to the dwellers of the Filevsky Park area, who lodged a petition with the SUE WATS, requesting to trap stray dogs without subsequent release. We are talking about sympathy specifically, because the dwellers still hope that their request will, by any standards of common sense and logic of things, be complied with in a week, a month, at latest ....Nothing doing, let them hope. As they say, hope is the last thing to die. Alas, NOW we realize their request WILL NEVER BE COMPLIED WITH (!!!), because recently SUE WATS in fact refused to trap without release any packs of neglected dogs, even if there is information proving the dogs are AGGRESSIVE. For example, read an article in mass media about a dog at Koptevo that bit dozens of Muscovites.)
         December 10, 2003, 6 signatures

*****

Letter from a Lady-dweller of Moscow Western Administrative District

To: Director of the Charitable Society
for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals
E.A.Ilyinsky

         On July 26, 2005, in the courtyard of houses at Malaya Filevskaya St. 12, blocks 1,2,3 at a childrens playground early in the morning (6.10 a.m.) a pack of 9 black dogs attacked a cat, killed it and carried it away in the teeth as prey; having passed a few houses, the pack abandoned the prey. Over the last few weeks, the street-cleaners have been removing cats, killed by the dogs, exhibiting characteristic signs of violent death. Such cats were discovered in succession on the childrens playground at 8, Malaya Filevskaya St., block 1, 3 days ago, at 8, Malaya Filevskaya St., block 3, 2 days ago; besides, we found 2 killed cats at 49, Bolshaya Filevskaya St., block 1; in the courtyard at 39, Bolshaya Filevskaya St., block, there disappeared several cats and one male cat was discovered killed. I saw for myself the attack and killing by dogs of a pet male cat at 6 a.m. on July 13. The dogs are hunting cats in the courtyards every day. This morning, when driving the dogs away from our courtyard, I myself was nearly attacked by the dogs. People in our housing estate are shocked by such cases, all of them busy discussing what they saw, how they rescued., etc.
         The street-cleaners, too, often become eye-witnesses of horrible accidents and fear to go out early. The guardians of cats are on the verge of a nervous breakdown. We applied to various organizations: Unitary Customer Management Office, Fili-Davydkovo Area Council, Municipality. The standard reply is that nothing can be done .
         Each killed cat personifies people, too, and cruel killing of cats is equivalent to the annihilation of people. We implore you to help us.
         26.07.2005, Signature

*****

Letter from a lady-pensioner, veteran of labor, dweller of Moscow Western Administrative District

To: Mr. Yevgeny Anatolievich Ilyinsky, President
"Center of Animal Legal Protection"

         I used to feed homeless cats that inhabited the basement of our building. I have nobody to feed now. All the cats have been torn to death by stray dogs.
         In 2006, 40 cats were torn to pieces by the dogs. In 2007, from 14th through 27th February, stray dogs, aided by the Single Consumers Board of Directors (DEZ), found their way to the basement by miracle (each Tuesday February 14, 21 and 28) and tore to pieces 8 cats. Two of these cats were pet kittens abandoned by their owners. This is a monstrous crime! Who needs this? Who authorized these bandits to taunt the cats, birds, trees and shrubs, the passers-by. The DEZes ignore the law of animal neutering.
         In my opinion, nurseries for homeless animals should be set up, there must be someone to regulate this. Why, all these hordes of hungry stray dogs inflict enormous damage on our flora and fauna, these poor creatures must be provided with accommodation, meals and care.
         It is the government of the city and the country that should take care of the animals, not the destitute pensioners. I draw a pension and I feed four cats and 2 dogs that I saved from those stray dogs. They even tore to pieces their congeners. I picked up all the aforesaid animals in a horrible condition, nursed them to health and now I have to keep them all at home, but where are the state and Moscow Government? It is their duty to look after the animals. They have closed down and keep closing the existing nurseries and throwing animals into the street, thus creating real mayhem. What they are doing is called a crime. Please, help me protect the cats; the poor creatures are torn not only in the street, but in their home, i.e. in the basement where they live. DEZ exterminates cats to facilitate privatization of the basements.
         Faithfully yours,
         /signature/
         01.03.2007

*****



Letter from a lady-dweller of the Moscow North-western Administrative District

To: Ye.A.Ilyinsky, Director
ANO Center of Animal Legal Protection

Dear Yevgeny Anatolyevich!

         I, b. 1941, live in Moscow North-western Administrative District and work at Tushino Area of Hydraulic Structures, a branch of FGUP (Federal State Unitary Enterprise) Moscow Canal.
         Part of Moscow Canal hydraulic structures is in Moscow North-western Administrative District, and myself being a resident of this district, I wish to testify, with full responsibility, that there are hordes of stray dogs in the district that are ill-disposed towards humans and to other animals (both dogs and cats).
          Khoroshevo-Mnevniki territory of water works facility No 9 (Karamyshevskaya Naberezhnaya).
          Pokrovskoe-Streshnevo - territory of waterworks facilities NoNo 7 and 8.
         Hordes of stray dogs roam both the territory of waterworks facilities, and residential areas, and present a real danger to cats living in the yard, of which one can hardly encounter any specimens alive.
         For example, at the addresses 11, B.Naberezhnaya St.; 1, Dolgova St., korp. 1,2,3; 7,14,16, Vodnkov St. there used to live over 20 cats in the basements of the buildings.
         All the cats were groomed, well-fed, healthy, excellent rat-catchers. At present, there are only three cats left, the others were ton to pieces by stray dogs.

         On the territory of waterworks facilities, the hordes of stray dogs are dangerous neighbors; for example, at waterworks facilities No 8 in Vodnikov St., all dogs that inhabited the area permanently were torn to pieces, except one that the workers are hiding now in the utility building at night.
         The personnel of Tushino RGS, both men and women, especially hydraulic engineers who have to work a lot in field conditions on the territory of all the hydraulic structures, fear these malicious hordes to the point of panic.
         Where I live, i.e. at 22, Planernaya St., korp. 1 ( Northern Tushino ), at first, refuge was given to a couple of stray dogs, only because the creatures were not neutered; yet, in a few years, there formed a stable horde of 6-8 dogs.
         This group of dogs, aggressive towards humans, charges with violent barking at the vehicles passing by in the yard any time of day, whereas the local cats are unable to stand this, at all. There are only three cats left in the micro-district of 11 residential buildings. By the way, unusually fat and impertinent rats visit now and then the place, where the dogs have their meals.
         So much for the sad statistics on the state of the fauna in Moscows NWAD.
         /signature/
         March 20, 2007

*****

Letter from the dwellers of Moscow Western Administrative District

To: Autonomous Non-profit Organization
Charitable Society for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals

Petition

         In the area of Filevsky Park metro station, there emerged a pack of stray dogs that kill cats. In a matter of 10 days alone, the corpses of 11 cats were found with tell-tale signs of dog bites. I kept a vigil for several nights running, and saw for myself the dogs tearing a cat to pieces. The pack included 8 dogs, I was unable to do anything. In the morning, my husband went out to walk the pet dog, from the basement at 6/2 Kurina St., 4 large dogs jumped out. I can give exact addresses, where this happened and the corpses of gnawed cats were picked up: Minskaya St. 3 cats, O.Dundicha St. 4 cats, Kastanaevskaya St. 2 cats, and 2nd Filevskaya St. 2 cats.
         Besides the dogs, cats have another enemy the sanitary-and-epidemiological station that simply exterminates cats. With the onset of the rodent-eradication season, there have died 18 cats, which were found in the basements; the number of rats remained the same. There used to be no rats in the house where I live; nowadays, rats walk freely in the street in the day-time. Another problem is that it has become impossible to feed the cats: unidentified people insult me, threaten with a physical assault; I was even beaten up in 2004.
         01.08.2005, 4 signatures

*****

Letter from a Lady-dweller of Moscow Northern Administrative District

To: Director of the Charitable Society
for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals
E.A.Ilyinsky

         We, the dwellers of the capital city of Great Russia, are faced daily with the homeless animals problem. Yes, weve had such a problem for the last several decades. Not only do we seek to join the European Union, we are talking a lot about humaneness, humanity, etc. Where is all that? Why are we talking only? Life has shown that our deeds are not as good as our words.
         Ill tell you about my own pain and about the pain of those aged women who live in my house, who are fond of animals, feed them for that miserly gift they receive from the state for they work for the good of our homeland, the name of which gift is pension.
         The basement of our apartment house is inhabited by homeless cats. These are charming creatures, small and big, we feed and have pity for them. One, the cleverest cat, has lived with us for the last ten years. We love our animals and are getting used to them.
         However, when I wake up at night from a heart-rending whine of a cat being torn apart alive by stray dogs, my sleep is gone, and my heart breaks. Upon leaving the entrance to the building, you see the maimed body of your pet cat, who you fed and caressed only the day before. How can you work and lead a normal life, having seen such a sight? Mind you, to some old women, the cats constitute the meaning of their lives.
         Alas, in July alone, the dogs strangled 4 cats in our courtyard, and in the day-time of 26.07.2005 two dogs were tousling a cat in the day-time before very eyes of an elderly woman! Afterwards, children were trying to help the poor creature, whose body, still breathing, was lying in the pit of the heat-supply line (under repair). The children were unable to help. Then, the woman appealed to the inspector technician for help. The cat was still alive. But, alas who is next? A kitten or a grown-up cat, and when?!
         I traveled abroad, I watch TV-transmissions about animals and the performance of special services towards rescuing the animals, and I cannot answer the question: why is the situation here so different from their situation? Why do they treat animals as if this were a human being? In this country, they dont care about people or animals. When in Britain, I saw no homeless animals anywhere.
         What does this amount to? The British are human beings, who are we then? The British, like so many other countries, managed to solve this problem, what about us?
         (...) How can we bring up children, not instilling love of animals in them? The children do see such situations of natural selection, dont they? They do, and they cannot help a wounded cat, or in the morning, when they see her dead. How can one then tell this child about a humane attitude towards our smaller brethren, how can one soothe an old woman who had fed the animal the day before? (...)
         With an aching heart,
         29.07.2005, Signature

*****

Letter from a Lady-dweller of Moscow South-western Administrative District

To: Director of the Charitable Society
for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals
Mr. E.A. Ilyinsky

Dear Evgeny Anatolievich!

         Ive been a guardian of homeless animals for years. Im a pensioner and have to spend my modest means to feed, cure the cats, as the authorities are doing nothing to solve the problem of abandoned animals.
         On the contrary, they create more problems to people like myself, namely: they wall up the basements, or simply seal up with cement all holes, as a result the cats cluster around those few holes that we have managed to unstop.
         Too much cruelty towards the animals. Most cats that I feed are foundlings.
         People acquire animals to please their children for a while, then throw the animals into the street, often mutilated.
         Not only do stray dogs tear cats and kittens to pieces: unfortunately, the pet dog owners bring up their pets in such a way that they do the same more often than stray dogs.
         The cats are given poison, and they die an agonizing death.
         In a house at . Street, there lived a cat by the name of Musya, the house residents decided to kill her. Some people saw them doing this with an unbelievable cruelty, and they were really shaken. They even had a great mind to contact journalists and have an article written on that.
         Until now, they would not allow me to come close to House No 16 and feed homeless animals. They used to kill homeless kittens and pour boiling water on them. They promised me too, to pour boiling water on my head, if I keep feeding animals near house No 16.
         My main request is to keep the holes to the basements open, or at least leave trap-doors for the cats.
         Sincerely yours, 12.07.2004, Signature

*****

Letter from a Lady-dweller of Moscow South-western Administrative District

To: Director of the Charitable Society
for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals
Mr. E.A. Ilyinsky

Dear Evgeny Anatolievich!

         For several years now, Ive been feeding and helping as much as I can the homeless cats. Its becoming increasingly difficult to do this. The cats are being deprived of the only place of their habitation: the basements, by closing the air-ducts.
         I dont understand how stray dogs are being neutered and in what districts of Moscow: I only see more and more packs of dogs in the courtyards, and these packs are literally hunting the cats.
         Do they really want to control the population of homeless animals by such barbarous means?
         Also, it is virtually impossible to cure wounded and ailing animals, since all veterinary services are provided at a cost, and there is no treatment of diseased cats at stationary hospitals. A vet clinic hotel is too costly. Nor am I in a position to take an ailing animal to my place.
         It is impossible to remain a looker-on in a situation where absolutely defenseless, and thus, unclaimed, animals die.
         Whats to be done to change the existing situation???
         10.07.04, Signature

*****

Letter from a Lady-dweller of Moscow South-western Administrative District

To: Director of the Charitable Society
for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals
Mr. E.A. Ilyinsky

Dear Evgeny Anatolievich!

         I am a guardian of homeless cats. I am a non-working pensioner, I take care of the animals, cure and sterilize them. Spending my pension; if necessary, I take the animals to my place, where it is impossible to cure them on the spot for the wounds inflicted by stray dogs or wicked people. My husband and I live in a small single-bedroom flat, and until recently we kept 3 cats. We picked them up after they were sterilized, for we did not risk to let them go in a dirty basement where they used to live, while the post-operation period was suddenly broken abruptly. The cats were infected and fell ill. We were busy nursing all six cats for 3 weeks. We spend a lot of money to buy medicine and good food. Homeless cats are ill most of the time, generally. The basement where thy live is dirty, part of the basement is filled with stagnant water, there are some Similiidae flying around, the cats are itching, their eyes are watering and discharging pus. One has to wash the eyes and drip the eyes with a medicine, which takes a lot of money. For example, in order to get into a basement to discover kittens that were born there, one has to pay a janitor, who holds the keys to the basement: pay, or leave. Making a gangway for cats to descend into the basement (the height is 2.5 m) also costs money, and so on. Imagine the money it takes to feed the cats twice a day. I feed 10 cats, plus the cats the come from the neighboring houses.
         My husband also loves cats. He goes to the country-house all winter long, saves the abandoned creatures from starvation. Normally, he would fire a stove, warm up some food, feed the cats and would sit with them for 2-3 days. As he goes, he leaves some dry food for the cats and leaves the door ajar. This is repeated every week. We ourselves are undernourished and cannot afford buying anything to ourselves; the main thing is that we suffer because of the hapless animals and for this reason are ailing. Im having nervous breakdowns all the time, having a serious problem with my thyroid gland, have acquired hyperthyrea. It will soon be 2 years that Ive been seeing an endocrinologist.
         The dogs are giving us a lot of troubles. Their owners set their pets at the cats deliberately, and many owners derive sheer pleasure seeing the cats running for their life from the dogs. Not all the cats have the time to disappear in an open window or climb a tree. The dogs catch up with the poor cats and wound them. Each day, the situation is repeated over and over. Sometimes, mutilations are quite serious. For example, a male cat had its hind foot bitten through, and was unable to step on it for 3 weeks; another male cat had his anus bitten off, it has been agonizing ever since, we are treating the cat, using our own means. Little by little, it is getting better. This happened because there was only anopening unwalled. One other tiny female cat also received a serious wound: a dog tore a flock with a piece of flesh, it also took us long to treat the poor cat. When we appeal to the owners not to unleash their dogs, we hear rude things, invective, threats to destroy our alms-house, etc. However, our authorities promised to pass a law on the animals, oblige the dog owners to walk their dogs on lead and muzzled only, as far as serious dogs are concerned, and as usual, all this proved to be sheer lies. However, in all fairness, whatever is created by God, should live and is entitled to live. Talk about the example set by the parent for their children. If you criticize a small boy for a stone flung into a cat, you see grimaces and hear unheard-of invective in response, the next day, when you come to feed the cats, you see sticks all around stones, trampled plastic plates, urine (sometime, human feces) in a plate instead of water. Meaning, someone committed harsh treatment of the cats. Adults are sometimes worse than their children: throwing lit up cigarettes at us from the windows, pouring water (sometime, urine) at us. Once, they threw a 5-liter water can at me. Thanks to God, the can fell on the ground a few centimeters from me.
         Dear Evgeny Anatrolievich!
         Our humble request to you is to assist us in the following:
         (1) sterilize and treat homeless cats free of charge;
         (2) open all holes in the basements;
         (3) organize shelters for homeless cats;
         (4) provide material assistance to the guardians;
         (5) carry out awareness campaigns at schools, on TV and radio on merciful treatment of animals.
         Sincerely yours,
         15.07.2004, Signature
         I apologize for this clumsy letter, Ive been unable to commit to paper all I wanted to write about, as Im being rather nervous.

*****

Letter from Dwellers of Balashikha Town, Moscow Oblast

To: Autonomous Non-profit Organization
Charitable Society for the Guardianship of Homeless Animals

Dear Svetlana and Evgeny

         We have visited your website www.animalsprotectiontribune.ru with great interest.
         We are extremely grateful to you for your titanic, meticulous efforts aimed against administrative dereliction, callousness and cruelty of some individuals towards homeless animals in our towns and cities. Over the last 3 years, weve seen horrible and cruel changes in respect of urban animals.
         In our courtyard (it was 3 years ago) in the basement of a 5-storied apartment house there lived a small family of several cats.
         According to the courtyard old-timers, the cat family founder was a home female cat called Jessica which, for some reason or other had become homeless. It was most affectionate and brave towards people. Her other offsprings were more timid and wild. Many people of the courtyard used to feed the family and kept clean its territory, adjoining the peoples lodging. At that time, the population of stray dogs began to increase abruptly, and the place where people used to feed the cats began to be watched permanently by the dogs. Subsequently, the dogs learned how to jump inside the basement via the air-duct. The dogs tore Jessica to pieces in one of the cat raids. Both homeless cats and pet cats used to die from the dogs teeth, as the pet cats walked out into the courtyard for a stroll. A few moths later we saw the hole leading to the basement welded with an iron sheet. The remaining member of the cat family vanished without a trace. We and some of the dwellers (including children) keep asking ourselves a question: what on earth happened to the harmonious family? Have they been poisoned, or driven away? we dont know.
         However, in the former case, the cats suffered from the dogs, in the latter case - from the cruelty of some people. At present, the two factors act with a redoubling force. Then dogs have survived and edged out cats nearly from all places; as for people, at best, they simply look on indifferently , but in fact they act worse than the dogs. The attitude of the authorities towards the problem of stray dogs is just as terrible. The dog population is increasing, they are becoming a certain menace to humans and to small animals and birds. Stray dogs have to live a drab, wretched life of starvation.
         The owners of fighting breeds of dogs think it is only useful to set their pets on lone animals, interesting and useful to a fighting character of the dogs. The teenagers let out their hatred and aggression on both cats and dogs. I dont think there are knackers in Balashikha only, who murder the dogs with sticks and kill the cats..
         We must foster kindness and care in our children. The example set by our authorities and callousness of the citizens are conducive to fostering cruelty and violence over the more weak and defenseless.
         We must struggle against all this horror. I read on your website letters that you had forwarded to various organizations. As well as the very formal responses to those letters. And administrative dereliction. So, what happens next?
         Sincerely,
         December 12, 2004, three signatures

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