Published On: Sun, Apr 29th, 2018

Cozumel Health authorities want to close down “Salvando Amigos y Dejando Huellas” Animal Shelter

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With threats of sanctions and fines, the City of Cozumel, aims to force the organization known as “Salvando Amigos y Dejando Huellas” (“Saving Friends and Leaving Footprints”), to stop rescuing stray dogs that roam free across the island.

Since it has not been able to find anomalies in the operation of this center, now the owner of the property has been coerced by the muncipal authorities which gave him a period of 10 days to evict the 18 dogs from the shelter that works with donations, denounced María Medina Zetina one of the promoters of this project.

Rubí Esther Canché Chuc, volunteer at the animal shelter, said that the sub directorate of Health headed by Carlos Manuel Aké García, has closed the Animal Control Center one year ago and seeks to stop people who take care of dogs in situation of abandonment.

Holding back her tears, María Medina pointed out that the sub directorate of Health has never liked “Salvando Amigos y Dejando Huellas”, and despite that the official has been invited many times to visit the facility, he never did.

Aké García’s response was that he does not need to go there and that those shelters are not necessary, since it is a job of the Animal Control Center. Which is totally incongruous, since the control center has been closed for more than a year.

On April 10, the owner of the property, who asked to remain anonymous, notified Medina that they had to vacate the premises due to complaints from neighboring businesses with the Health sub-directorate, who in turn informed the owner that the shelter had to be closed down, since it represented a risk of sanitary infection.

(Photo: wikimedia)

A tour of the facilities by appointment by SIPSE, made it possible to confirm that the shelter, located on the corner of Pedro Joaquin Coldwell Avenue with Etzna Street, was clean and in good conditions without generating unpleasant odors.

The Cozumel Humanitarian Society, the most important canine and feline shelter on the island, is also located within a popular neighborhood, and residents had never complained.

“Salvando Amigos y Dejando Huellas” needs donations

To carry out their noble work the organization “Saving Friends and Leaving Footprints” receives donations from citizens and businessmen, but according to data provided by María Medina, donations are scarce these days.

“I do not understand why Carlos Aké threatens the owner of the property to force him to kick us out. He supports us with an affordable rent, as part of his contribution, because he loves animals, but now he is being coerced by the muncipal authorities, who claim that economic sanctions will be applied, if the shelter is not shut down.”

Rubí Canché said that the problem of abandoned dogs is a “Public Health Problem” for everyone on the island of Cozumel and that “Salvando Amigos y Dejando Huellas takes actions that the municipal authorities refuse to take.

Source: SIPSE



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