There are so many wonderful people in the world whose kindness and compassion to dogs is an inspiration to us all.
Earlier this year I read an amazing story about Urusla Vari – a yoga teacher from California who met a stray dog on the streets of Peru just hours before her flight was due to leave.
The dog, was in a terrible state. His skin was raw- and his injuries were consistent with being hit by several cars. He was a sad pitiful creature who many would have pretended not to see.
Ursula boarded her plane but she couldn’t forget that dog. She could not walk away. On arrival in LA Ursula rang every dog rescue team in the city. She begged and cajoled them to find the dog who she had met for a few fleeting minutes.
For several days Ursula waited by the phone and at last she got the call. He was found. The vets advised he would only live for another day – his treatment would cost thousands and even then he might not pull through. Undeterred, Ursula managed to raise the money and the local vets began treatment. Finally, after four months she went back to Peru to see the dog whose life she had saved,
Today that once scared, sick street dog is living the life that all dogs deserve. Now named Charlie, Ursula took him home to California where he sleeps beside her.
And he even has a girlfriend, Gelsimina.
For her compassion and kindness to a dog, that many would have overlooked, we name Ursula Vari our very first Travel Wags hero.
She says Charlie has taught her patience and that love does not know colour, breed, age or borders.
We say Ursula has taught us to not look away.
Today we sent Charlie a Travel Wags dog walking bag so he can enjoy many more adventures with his wonderful Mum. We hope you like it Charlie. Big hugs from the Travel Wags team in New Zealand .
In a couple of weeks Ursula is heading back to Peru to help more street dogs. She does not have a big PR campaign behind her or funding – if any of you can donate just the price of a cup of coffee it would make all the difference to this wonderful woman doing so much to try to help our loyal companions in need.
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It was an easy decision choosing this month’s Travel Wag’s hero.
Australian ultra marathon runner Dion Leonard is a man on a mission to save one small stray dog in China.