Greek Authorities Illegaly Shut Down Dog Shelter Because They Simply…Felt Like It

Greek ridiculousness has no limits. When the corruption reaches the levels of a sub-Saharan African country (no offense), and when every government official can do whatever he wants to, simply because…he can, the innocent pay the price and the frustration reaches unprecedented levels.

If you are not Greek, this will be a bit complicated for you to understand, so be patient (for the dogs’ sake). I’ll try to make it as simple as possible:

Fact 1:

Greece is a third world country when it comes to animal welfare. There are more than a million strays roaming the streets, being abused, poisoned, ran over and starved every day. We can’t save them all because we can’t rehome them all.

Fact 2:

Shelters that belong to charities, which means shelters that are ran by volunteers who love dogs, are very rarely given an official permit – almost never actually. Guess what: charities don’t have the money to bribe a corrupt government official, and even if they did, they would rather spend it on saving, treating and feeding dogs. On the contrary, public shelters (aka concentration camps) always get a permit. Who cares if there is no vet caring for the dogs, if they are ran by employees who spent an hour per day abusing or simply neglecting the animals, if dogs starve to death and feed off each other? They have a permit!

Fact 3:

YES, Greece gets money – EU money – for animal welfare. Now, guess which of the two types of shelters above “profits” from that money?
Taking those facts into consideration, let’s take a look at what happened to the shelter of Halkida.


A New Zealander (that’s right: a NEW ZEALANDER) donated a property to the local charity of Halkida, where the shelter is built and ran by volunteers only. The local authorities stand by the charity – well, two decades ago, corruption was still naive I guess. The shelter works legally until 2003.


The shelter needs a new permit. The reason: illegal houses built all around it make the pre existing shelter illegal! You heard right: the shelter was there, houses were illegally built around the area, and now the shelter is illegal because it is too close to people’s homes according to the law! The permit needed is never granted by the state.

2014 – 2015

The local charity keeps neutering and spaying dogs and cats for free. It asks the municipality for collaboration but all it gets is a “no, thank you”. The municipality of Halkida supposedly spent 100.000 euros (EU money, just reminding you) for spaying and neutering 500 animals! (you do the math…), but the 576 that were neutered by the charity cost the state nothing, because the money came out of volunteers’ and vets’ pockets.


The local authorities burst into the shelter one day, trying to remove the dogs and close it down. They are confronted by infuriated citizens and by the vet of the local clinic, who has been standing by the strays for years and who basically tells the authorities that they can only remove the dogs she cares for “over her dead body”.
Oh I almost forgot!

Fact 4

The municipality of Halkida does have a public concentration camp (I’m sorry, dog shelter). Volunteers are not allowed to access it. There is no vet caring for the dogs. In fact..what dogs? Has anyone ever seen those dogs? All you get about this public shelter is a page in the municipality’s website with no photos – oh but of course, these is a three member committee in charge of it (three salaries… EU money, just reminding you one more time).

Fact 5

The 150 well fed, vaccinated, sterilized, healthy, adoptable animals of the Clive shelter will be removed…where? Nobody knows. Probably somewhere where they will starve to death, while the municipality will be collecting money for them and filling the pockets of corrupt committee members.

*Oh, I almost forgot! The 150 dogs that the state is so eager to confiscate, are dogs whose vaccines, operations, sterilization, treatment and food we paid by volunteers. The authorities couldn’t care less about them, until now, when they suddenly decided that they have a say in their future.
Welcome to the Third World ladies and gentlemen. Isn’t it picturesque?

You can visit the charity’s Facebook page here.  The volunteers running it are in desperate need of all the help they can get, so feel free to contact them. You can sign the petition HERE.

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11 thoughts on “Greek Authorities Illegaly Shut Down Dog Shelter Because They Simply…Felt Like It”

  1. I will not go on holiday to Greece because of there cruelty to animals especially dogs they are on a par with china etc!! Eu mu st be told the money is not spent on animal welfare and given direct to charitys instead!! Start up a petetion??, m ake people aware??? My heart goes out to you for all you do to help the these poor dogs and cats!! Shame on Greece!!!

    1. instead of turning your back to Greece, please come. Spend holidays in the lovely coastal city of Chalkis and visit our shelter. we need volunteers to walk our dogs, take pictures, share them on their page and help us home them. then, other strays can take their place and have their turn to a public life that could give them a forever family. Not all Greeks are the same (Thank God!)

      1. I agree. Greece needs to open up to new ideas and the animals need all the help they can get. Isolating the country will only make things worse for the animals. Come and talk to the locals, explain to them how mistreating animals make the country look bad, volunteer at a shelter or simply get to know all of us, the ones who rescue and do our best to change things.

  2. This is just another nail in the coffin for poor starving neglected animals in Greece …..i see this more and more every year as a tourist , suffering , poisoning ….unloved and unwanted .

  3. I hate coming to Kefalonia now. Nothing has changed. The volunteers work so hard all year around, at their own expense. We send money from the U.K. and all around Europe. I’m done with this country. It’s too corrupt! I will spread the word.

  4. THIS FIGHT FOR SURVIVAL OF THE SHELTER HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR MANY YEARS, let it stop now, there are lives at stake.

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