Every year, thousands of dogs are discarded in Spain once the hunting season ends – luckily one woman has taken up arms to save them all.
By Published on 12 Mar 2019
A horrific form of torture is reserved for unwanted hunting dogs
Hunting season is a hugely important event in Spain, with large competitions being held between September and February each year. Galgos, otherwise known as Spanish Greyhounds, are the breed of choice for hunters, who appreciate their sharp eyesight, agility and speed. Sadly, when hunting season ends and there is no more immediate need for the dogs, (especially the ones that do not perform well), owners cast the animals out – often in a most inhumane way. Dogs are not only dumped on the side of the road, but they are also sometimes tortured – strung up from olive trees and abandoned there to face a slow death, doused in acid, or burned with cigarettes, to cite only a few of the horrific ways these innocent animals are treated.
Tina the saviour
Luckily, there is a wonderful woman on their side. Tina Wales Solera, a former personal trainer, moved to Spain from the UK with her family in 2007. In search of the good life, she did not expect what she found when she arrived. “There were these dogs everywhere”, she told The Sun. “Huge packs of them moving around the towns and cities, dead dogs by the side of the road”. Tina could not stand idly by and do nothing.
In 2011, she set up the Galgos del Sol charity, and began taking in hundreds of abandoned dogs in order to treat them and put them up for adoption. Tina is currently in her busiest season: “We have a massive influx each year at the end of February with the end of the hunting season”, she says. At any one time, Tina has 250 dogs to care for in her kennels, and that’s not counting the 16 she has living in her own home!
Hope for their future
Thanks to Tina, hundreds of these dogs get rehomed every year in Europe, including in the UK. “It can take months or years for them to build their confidence up”, Tina says. “But we get there”. This woman’s devoted spirit is giving hundreds of dogs a second chance at a normal dog life. From the streets of Spain to couches in England – these pooches have a lot to be thankful for!