Going the extra mile

12th Jul, 2019

Left to right: Mexico (10-year old female), Jango (9-year old male), Dobbie (6-year old male), Zion (8-year old male) and Chai (8-year old female)

Written by Sandra Ras, founder of Kaalgat Hairless Dog’s Rescue

Professional photography by Lilly Linkert Photography

 There is a saying:

“Without my dog, my wallet would be full, my house would be clean, but my heart would be empty.”

Our first encounter with hairless dogs occurred 14 years ago when we received one as a gift from my brother. Eventually, one became two, and I then embarked on several fundraising walks with the dogs to support other shelters.

This is when the general public began to take notice of the hairless breed. Branches of the SPCA began to contact us in connection with stray hairlesses that were brought in to them, and we’d be asked to take care of them. People started tagging us on Facebook posts, and everything escalated from there!

Being able to care for hairless breed dogs takes a lot of knowledge, and we had to learn as we went along. Sadly, we lost some of our strays along the way due to cancer or cross-breeding, but as we’ve grown, we’ve passed on our knowledge on to others too.

In our travels, we’ve collected and cared for dogs from far away, having visited Brits, Rustenburg, Randfontein, Stilfontein, and more, to collect dogs in need. Our most recent trip involved five African Sand hairless dogs.

Together with my dear spouse, Johan, we left Pretoria at 5pm on Friday, the 24th of May. We drove up to Colesberg and arrived there just before 1am. We took a well-deserved rest, and by 6am the following day we were on the road again.

We reached Paarl and got to meet the dogs and a beautiful lady who cared for them. Johan got a good few hours’ sleep before we embarked on our return trip. We arrived safely in Pretoria on Sunday at 4pm, and the dogs adapted well. To date, nobody has made an offer to adopt any of the dogs, but they’ll eventually be rehomed if there’s interest.

All our trips, medical expenses, food, and things regarding these lovely dogs were paid for from our own pockets; thankfully, Kaalgat Hairless Dogs Rescue became a registered NPO in August 2018.

We’re based in the area of Haakdoringboom and currently have 50 hairless and 20 hairy dogs. They vary from Mexican Hairless, Chinese Crested, American Hairless Terriers and Peruvian Hairless to African Sand Terriers.

For more information about Kaalgat Hairless Dog’s Rescue, contact Sandra Ras on 065 301 1367, email sandraras30@gmail.com or follow them on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Kaalgat-Hairless-Dog-Rescue-915853488620452/