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Koritsi-mou

Koritsi

With every dog there is always a good story. With rescued dogs, even better stories. But every so often there is one in a million rescue story which will be turned into a film!
Please meet Koritsi-Mou a very special Greek Sheepdog and Amanda a very special lady who gave up her glamorous career to found a small shelter in Greece.
In Amanda’s own words, this is the true story of a mother’s love and the incredible bond when a dog finds a human they trust.

“Koritsi first appeared outside the shelter one day with another male shepherd dog, both were very obviously underfed and very timid so stayed at a distance. I left food and water for both of them they ate and went back to their farm.

This became a regular thing. Koritsi and her friend would appear when they were hungry or hurt. I’d fix them up, mainly the male who would fight for the females who came into season.

Koritsi then had pups but the farmer took them away too soon, she still had milk. She was really distressed and it was heart breaking to watch as she searched for her pups but never found them.

Koritsi had been a great guard dog and her pups were well sort after. The farmer had given them away to other farms.

From that day Koritsi NEVER went back to the farm or tended the sheep. She remained outside the shelter where she became much less timid, so we built her a kennel and there we began to bond.  She would be so happy to see me drive up – she’d dance like the horses.

So as Koritsi was now living with us at the shelter I asked the farmer if I could have her spayed. NO was the very quick response. They wanted her puppies!

Koritsi fell pregnant again, only this time the winter was well on its way. We are in Northern Greece and can often have temperatures of -20C and that winter the snow fell solidly for days. So we extended her kennel outside the shelter, but one day she just disappeared. She must have gone off to give birth and hide her babies, but we never found out where.

After a few days Koritsi re-appeared, thin and hungry. She ate, drank and while I wasn’t looking sneaked off back to her hidden babies. Every day that she didn’t return felt like a year, she would appear for food only now and then. Food and water were left for her everyday but she didn’t always come to eat. In the now frozen landscape she was all alone with her pups.

Then one early morning, freezing snow all around, I arrived at the shelter to find Koritsi sitting very proudly with one pup. First thought was to get the pup and mum safe and warm.  My second thought was this little pup must be the only surviving pup as the weather had been so cruel.

Second morning Koritsi was there again, sitting on the hill next to the shelter gate with the second pup. I didn’t see her baby at first as she had blended into the back ground being black and white.  She was sitting next to the black shelter fencing and surrounded by snow. This tiny pup was, who is now known as, Amy.

Koritsi was unsettled and after seeing her two pups reunited and eating a little she left. The pups were happy and content in their new warm kennel with lots of blankets.

The next morning, before the farm traffic started, I arrived at the shelter and to my total amazement Koritsi had another three healthy pups waiting for me. They were playing in the snow!

I praised Koritsi for being the best mum, she looked so proud of her litter. Then to my amazement she led them into the puppy pen and sat for a while with all five pups. When they had cuddled up and gone to sleep Koritsi left them and came outside to me. She ate a little, stayed for a cuddle then to my disbelief began to walk away.

Now Koritsi was not only painfully thin but she looked tired, she was weak.

I pleaded with her to stay, telling her I would take care of her, I told her that her pups needed her. But slowly she walked away looking back now and then.

I was really torn, did she want to go off to rest or worse was this the end for Koritsi, had the birth and taking care of these beautiful pups been too much for her through such a harsh winter. Or were there more pups?

I had to let her go but that afternoon and evening I searched for her but my search was not successful. I didn’t sleep that night, I kept thinking Koritsi was out there in the snow, weak and cold.

Early the next morning, with a sorry heart, I headed up to the shelter to make sure the pups were ok and feed them. And there sitting on the hill was beautiful, happy Koritsi, head held high, and three more pups playing happily around her tail that was now wagging!

Koritsi led her last three pups into the puppy pen and this time she stayed!”

 

To this day Koritsi is still Amanda’s shadow, following her car as she makes her way to the shelter every morning. She then sits at the top end of shelter looking out at her old farm, watching the sheep go out to graze in the mountains but she never goes any closer.

All eight of Koritsi’s gorgeous puppies survived and we helped Amanda find them wonderful new homes here in England. Several of them now have their own amazing stories which we will be posting here shortly.

Amanda is one of the true Rescue Heroes that our charity support. Her shelter is entirely self-funded and the survival of the 70 plus dogs in her care is entirely due to the generosity of Amanda’s family and friends.

You can find out more about shelter life, her dogs for adoption and how you can help here: www.compassionforgreekpaws.com

Facebook: Compassion for Greek Paws