About us - Dogs in Distress

    About Dogs in Distress

    When Marie Hannon (Founder Dogs in Distress) visited Ashton Pound, Dublin in 2002 approximately 60% of dogs entering that pound were put to sleep. This statistic was the norm across the Republic of Ireland. Appalled by this fact, Marie set about rescuing dogs from the pound. To do this she established a home foster based dog rescue organisation.  Since then, Dogs in Distress has rescued thousands of dogs and puppies that would have otherwise been put to sleep.

    Dogs in Distress rescue dog photo
    Nick (pictured left) rescued through Dogs in Distress, enjoying the country-side with Lola

    Dogs in Distress today

    Dogs in Distress now rescues unwanted dogs directly from County Meath public dog pound and also from individuals who are no longer willing or able to look after them.  By doing this we aim to rescue dogs directly from the public pound and also reduce the number of dogs that are surrendered into the public pound system. Dogs in Distress is active mainly in Dublin (Dublin County and Dublin City North & South), Meath, Kildare and Wicklow. Most of our fosterers are based in Dublin and Meath. However we rescue and rehome dogs all over Ireland.

    We do not have a physical shelter facility. Instead we use a network of volunteer fosterers who offer temporary homes to our dogs and pups. Our fosterers open their homes and hearts to our dogs. Because they get to know the foster dog very well they can provide a comprehensive profile or “CV” for the dog which enables us to more effectively match the dog or pup to the right person or family.

    Our standard procedure is to spay/neuter, micro-chip, vaccinate and worm all of our dogs. Where other medical intervention is required it is provided. We only home our dogs to those who we feel have the attitude, facilities and lifestyle to take on the considerable responsibility of caring for a dog.

    We use the discussion forum on our website as a resource for communication amongst our volunteers and supporters and also as a means of publicising our dogs that are looking for homes to potential adoptors. We have a network of approximately sixty volunteers, who provide services such as dog fostering, providing transport and fundraising. We have no paid staff, all of our income goes directly to caring for and re-homing our dogs and pups.

    Pound dog photo
    Public Pound, Dublin 2009

    Unwanted dogs in Ireland

    According to the latest Department of the Environment figures available, over 6,132 dogs and pups were euthanised in the public dog pound system in Ireland in 2012. This figure is the officially reported number but does not include death by cruelty or euthanasia of healthy dogs by vets or by other means.

    Stray dogs and pups are kept in the public dog pound for five days to allow owners to find them. Many are not traced by their owners within the short time allowed, or alternatively the owner is traced by the pound yet fails to show up to collect their dog. Dogs voluntarily surrendered to the public dog pound may be put to sleep by the management of public pounds immediately. The vast majority of the dogs that are put to sleep in Irish public dog pounds are healthy, well socialised dogs.

    Dogs deserve better. Dogs in Distress aims to rescue unwanted dogs and ensure they have a happy life, where they are loved, appreciated and respected. Please help us to help them.

    Adoption photo
    A happy DID dog in her new home

    The Dogs in Distress approach

    We neuter, worm, microchip and vaccinate all of our dogs during their time in foster care. The fosterer assists with house training, lead training and general socialisation to ensure our dogs are ready for their new life. Most importantly the fosterer provides love, care and attention to their foster dog.

    Some of the dogs that we rescue have not been properly cared for and may need veterinary care. Our vet bills our considerable and we rely on the generosity of our adoptors and supporters to help us raise the funds that we need to cover our costs.

    All of the dogs listed on our Forum under the Urgent Action Dogs discussion area are at risk. If you can offer help either in the form of a foster home or a donation please contact us. Don't assume someone else will.