It all started in Afghanistan with a British Royal Marine, a dog fight, and a mature fighting dog. Lucky for Pen Farthing and Nowzad (the dog) he was able to create a small safe area for him to stay. Though at the time Nowzad was fierce, territorial and willing to fight for his dinner, hardly a pet. Other dogs near the base somehow understood that within that fence there was safety for their puppies. Through communications with Mayhew International they were able to forge a way for the pups to come to England. Pen was able to arrange transport for the dogs to safety in Kabul. You can read the entire story, from Britain to Afghanistan and back in “One Dog at a Time” by Pen Farthing from the Nowzad http://www.amazon.com/One-Dog-Time-Saving-Afghanistan/dp/0312607741 The tale is likely to make you cry both sad and happy tears.
After returning to Britain Pen and his wife Lisa determined to found a charity to help other soldiers bring home their adopted canine soul mates. This was the start of Nowzad.
Fast forward a few years, The Nowzad charity was established in Britain in 2007, and in the USA a few individuals established in 2010 the Soldiers Animal Companions Fund (SACFund), http://www.sacfund.com/ which as a donor-advised fund allows Tax Deductible donations from U.S. residents to go to the Nowzad’s Soldier Rescues. SACFund spends virtually NO MONEY on advertizing, they are all volunteers. Nowzad spends some money for literature and banners, etc. Only a few people in Britain are paid. In Afghanistan Louise and her staff of Afghan assistants and veterinarians at the Nowzad Shelter and Clinic receive any salary. Within this totally donation-funded effort; in January 2011 Nowzad established the ONLY SANCTIONED ANIMAL SHELTER IN AFGHANISTAN!!
Upon arriving at the Nowzad Shelter all animals are kept in isolation for 2 weeks to be observed for symptoms of disease. They are given a bath, wormer, treated for fleas and ticks, and the series of needed vaccinations is started. Nowzad has not lost a single rescue to Parvo, distemper, etc., since they built their own facility. Any injuries are treated and most are spayed/neutered. The animals must stay at the Shelter for at least 30 days after receiving their rabies shot. Nowzad rigorously complies with and documents their adherence to the British, American and other international health standards for importing pets. Additionally, they are all micro-chipped, so their vet records can be verified that way.
The SACFund was created to help U.S soldiers and Marines bring home the adopted pets that made their tour in Afghanistan bearable. There are SACFund funded, Nowzad saved and soldier adopted dogs and cats in over half of the American States. In addition SACFund has become aligned with ‘War Dogs Making it Home’, http://wardogsmakingithome.org/ , a charity out of Chicago that pairs rescue dogs with veterans with PTSD and-or TBI, to become service dogs to help them through their daily routines. So far two gentle Afghan dogs have been selected for their training program.
Nowzad continues on its long-term mission, to help soldiers transport their “battle buddies” to permanent loving homes; and in Afghanistan to foster a change in attitude toward animals, from cats to dogs to donkeys to horses. They are becoming known for their Trap Neuter Vaccinate Release program, which has barely started. Their clinic offers many basic services to Afghan pet owners as your vet at home; shots, wormer, checkups, spay & neuter. Vaccinating the dogs for rabies is especially important, rabies in dogs is a major health hazard for humans in that country, look up rabies on Wiki, and think about your own children. They often re-home healthy pups and friendly strays with responsible Afghan families that are happy for the joy a dog can bring to a household
Please visit Nowzad at www.nowzad.com to learn more.
There is a second book – “No Place Like Home” also by Pen Farthing http://www.amazon.com/Place-Like-Home-Pen-Farthing/dp/0091928834
Also – almost all Afghan dogs have curly tails!
Commentary by The Crazy Dog Lady:
Willy came to us via a different organization, and I invite one of their representatives to guest blog if they would like to.
What appeals to me most about Nowzad is it’s ENTIRE mission. Please visit their web site to learn more about this very worthy cause.
Though I have not read “No Place Like Home” yet, I have read “One Dog at a Time”. It is HIGHLY recommended!