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Woman Dedicates Her Life to Rescuing Dogs

Woman Dedicates Her Life to Rescuing Dogs
January 25
11:31 2020

Woman Dedicates Her Life to Rescuing Dogs

It is not a common occurrence to find someone who dedicates all their time to caring for the dogs that they rescued from inhumane situations, often times at the hands of humans. But we stumbled upon a woman through a Facebook post who does not only dedicate her life to caring for the seven dogs she has rescued, but goes out to rescue more when she gets news that another one needs help. And she does it all from her own pocket!

“I’ve always loved animals,” Georgia Aranda-Lewis told us from her home in Ladyville where she has been caring for the seven rescues that she now calls hers. She moved back to Belize six years ago, after migrating to the US at the age of 19. Now 49, she says that one particular incident she witnessed as a child never left her memory and was probably what triggered her to look out for these “helpless, innocent” beings. At age eight, she witnessed a neighbourhood dog get run over by a vehicle on Cairo Street in Belize City where she grew up. She said the incident moved her to tears and that the other children laughed at her when she cried.

“I was powerless and I didn’t understand why they laughed,” she said, believing that most people did not care much for the animals. “But Whiskey stuck in my head and heart because I was hurt,” she added. Even now that she has moved back to Belize, she thinks that a lot of people mistreat their pets and that brings back her childhood memories. “I felt the need to do something now because I have control and didn’t as a kid. When I moved back home six years ago, I realized that they are not treated well. They need me and I feel like I moved home for a reason.”

Already with two dogs that she brought with her from the US, Georgia did not think twice to rescue a dog in her neighbourhood that was being mistreated, she says. It didn’t end there. Every time she learned of a dog that was either homeless or being abused, she would go and see how she can help to save the animal. And even though one of the dogs she brought with her has died from an incurable illness, she has seven at home. Four of them she saved from getting hit by vehicles or hurt by humans. She explained that her husband works in the US while she oversees the completion of their home, where he will move in with her shortly.

Georgia’s love for her pets is not like the regular person’s; she buys them costumes for different occasions such as Halloween and Christmas. In fact, they are an integral part of her daily routine – oftentimes seen with a different one each day as she takes her jog or walk about the village. At home, she spends time in the yard playing with them and giving them snacks. She feeds them all twice a day and each one gets a bath every week and if the situation arises, the vet is a visit away.

(Georgia Aranda-Lewis and the dogs she has saved)

She shared with us that the moment she takes home a stray or rescued dog, the vet sees them and gives them whatever necessary shots or medication, including de-wormers.

Thereafter, they go to get spayed or neutered. The last such case was last week when she drove three of them to Cayo, taking advantage of the specials they were offering to do the surgeries.

Georgia admits that she never intended to take in so many dogs as her own. “I keep telling myself this one will be the last one, but when I see more suffering, my heart wants to help. The suffering bothers me the most. It is unfair. People lack knowledge,” she scolded.

It was with this realization and the reality of what many dogs endure every day that makes Georgia want to run a non-government organization that will look after displaced or abandoned pets. If her dream becomes reality, educating people, including children who mistreat and abuse animals, will be a part of its purpose. “We have to educate,” she said, “because children follow what they see the adults do to animals and these animals are innocent and don’t deserve it.”

Helping to lobby for enhanced laws with more stringent penalties against people caught abandoning, mistreating or abusing animals is also high on Georgia’s bucket list. She shared that people oftentimes confront her with the suggestion that she wastes time and money on dogs. Her response: “It’s not wasting time; I’m doing what I love. They are helpless and innocent. God created all of them, just like He created you and me.”

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