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Menta: the face of the Spanish galgo

14 April 2021

Menta: the face of the Spanish galgo

Hunters dump, abuse and kill more than 50,000 galgos annually in Spain. When the greyhounds are lucky they are brought to shelters where they are lovingly cared for. Many galgos will never have this luck: some galgueros (hunters) leave their dogs in wells, hang them from trees, bring them to killing stations or dump them somewhere where they are left to their fate. Besides the hare hunt with galgos there is another activity that causes a lot of animal suffering: the championships.

Menta is one of those mistreated galgos. In December 2020 the shelter Amores Peludos, based in Madrid, was called by a galguero. He had a galgo that was not doing well; she was very skinny and would not eat. Two volunteers then visited the galguero to see the dog. They found the dog in shocking circumstances. The animal was extremely thin, unable to stand up or walk, and the hunter was literally kicking her out. The volunteers begged the hunter to leave her alone, and took her in their arms to a vet. After examination, it turned out that her stomach was full of stones. She weighed only 16 kg. Her anus was damaged - it is unknown if this was due to malnutrition, a dog bite or because something had been inserted. The oesophagus was full of stones and bones.

The same day of her rescue, this unfortunate galgo was given her new, beautiful name: Menta (named after the plant mint). The volunteers did everything to give her strength and the rest she needed so badly. In December and January she stayed with a family for a few weeks, with her bed under the Christmas tree, where she was cared for a with warmth and love.

During this period it became clear that Menta was unable to wag her tail. She also had difficulty standing up after urinating and could barely lean on one hind leg. Despite all the food she received and her good appetite, she continued to lose weight, until she only weighed 12 kg. She was also unable to defecate, so the volunteers had to remove her faeces daily. Sometimes she could not walk and urinated in her own bed. After several examinations at the vet it became clear that Menta has a neurological problem, caused by severe physical abuse. She can't feel anything on a back leg and around the anus. She is now entering a rehabilitation process. Menta will probably undergo surgery. Possibly her leg will have to be amputated, but first the team will look at other options. Fortunately, her weight has increased. Menta is not up for adoption and there is a good chance that this will never happen. But Lara, the founder of Amores Peludos, will continue to care for her.

Menta is the face of the Spanish galgo. She is a symbol for the 50,000 dogs that undergo a horrible fate every year. Menta's story is unfortunately no exception. Many galgos are so maltreated that they have to be put to sleep by a veterinarian immediately after their rescue. CAS International wants to end these atrocities. When the law forbids hunters to hunt with galgos, podencos and other hunting dogs, galgos like Menta will not be used as disposable articles anymore.

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