Animal Action Greece first began working with animal welfare organisation, Artemis, after the tragic wildfires in Greece in August 2021. Since then, we have worked in collaboration to set up a temporary veterinary practice in the village of Taxiarchis, Northern Evia, to treat and care for animal fire victims on the island. In September 2021, a large container was donated by the Prefecture of Central Greece to begin housing the practice, and we provided the necessary equipment and supplies to get it up and running. Although the practice was initially set up to treat animals in the immediate aftermath of the summer wildfires, we were keen to utilise this newly created space to achieve something positive after such a devastating event, helping animals in the area on a more long-term basis.
After a year of hard work, planning and executing all of the legal and operational paperwork and permits, the practice officially delivered the first sterilisation outreach trip in September 2022.
Through our Sterilisation Programme, we operate a number of long-term projects across the country that aim to strategically reduce the stray population in those areas through sterilisation and population mapping. On Evia, our plan was to support Artemis in being able to use the new Taxiarchis Animal Welfare Practice as a base for sterilising and vaccinating animals, and as a standby emergency station ready to treat animals in case of another disaster or extreme weather conditions.
We are extremely pleased to have been able to add four mass sterilisation outreach visits at the Taxiarchis Animal Welfare Practice to our 2022/23 Sterilisation Programme, with a grand total of 131 cats 90 dogs being sterilised, vaccinated and microchipped.
It has been a difficult project to get off the ground, with many legal, political and bureaucratic issues to overcome. But the outcome has been worth the effort! We are very pleased that we have helped set up this unique animal welfare vet practice, as an outcome of the devastating wildfires, in an economically disadvantaged region of Greece. The ‘Artemis Animal Welfare Vet Practice’ in Taxiarchis has now attracted significant regional and national political interest as a ‘model’ vet practice to address stray animal welfare issues.