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Woman Quits Her Job And Spends Life Savings Looking After Stray Dogs

Woman Quits Her Job And Spends Life Savings Looking After Stray Dogs

A mum of two has told how she quit her job and jetted abroad to where she found herself looking after stray dogs with £40k of her life savings.

Honestly, after watching footage we're pretty sure we've found our calling:

Dimitra Andreou, 37, jetted to Larnaca, Cyprus, to set up a new life with her family, but in the process also found a very rewarding new occupation.

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Formerly an assistant bank manager, Dimitra became besotted with the stray pooches she spotted roaming near where they lived, and couldn't bear the thought of leaving them to 'die of starvation'.

Dimitra Andreou now owns Doggy Warriors Rescue Sanctury and works there full time (Credit: Caters)
Dimitra Andreou now owns Doggy Warriors Rescue Sanctury and works there full time (Credit: Caters)

The shelter relies on donations but 'there is never enough' meaning Dimitra has had to fork out £40,000 of her life savings to cover the costs of the shelter, veterinary bills and food for the dogs.

Thes shelter has found 52 dogs a forever home since January this year - some of which have been flown to Europe and UK to meet their new owners.

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Dimitra, from Leicester, says: "When I first moved to Cyprus, I felt extremely upset every time I walked past a stray dog who didn't even have a drop of water.

"Unfortunately, the locals would rather see them die which is why I could never walk away.

Some of the dogs would have starved if left unattended (Credit: Caters)
Some of the dogs would have starved if left unattended (Credit: Caters)

"I have seen dogs living in horrendous conditions, cooped up in a small cages covered with excrement and dirty water.

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"Hunters will use their dogs until they can't physically work anymore and then dump them in appalling conditions or even worse shoot them.

"It doesn't get any easier seeing dogs who are skin and bone every day and scared of everything and anything.

Dimitra couldn't bare to see the dogs suffer (Credit: Caters)
Dimitra couldn't bare to see the dogs suffer (Credit: Caters)

"We have dogs who are covered in ticks and fleas but it more upsetting to see the ones who are mentally suffering.

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"We called one dog the 'broken boy' as he was too frightened to look up for three days, I couldn't even imagine what had happened to him.

"As much as it breaks you to see them like this, it is so rewarding when they find their trust in us and see that we are here to help."

Looking back at her life before moving to Cyprus, Dimitra reflected that she never would have imagined herself living such a low maintenance existence.

She was used to getting hair nails done all the time and wearing a full face of makeup.

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Dimitra's lifestyle has completely changed since moving to Cyprus (Credit: Caters)
Dimitra's lifestyle has completely changed since moving to Cyprus (Credit: Caters)

"But now half the time I am covered in dog poo," she added. "I never thought I would invest all my time and money into looking after and rehoming dogs, but it is the best thing I ever did."

Not only have Dimitra's savings gone into the project, but her husband Paul, 42, also puts "everything he earns" into it too - largely because he was "sick to death" of her bringing doggos home. What an amazing cause.

You can donate to the shelter via their Facebook page: Doggie Warriors Rescue Sanctuary.

Featured Image Credit: Caters

Topics: Dog, Real, Animal Welfare, Animals

Joanna Freedman

Joanna is a journalist at Tyla with a particular interest in highlighting women's issues and telling inspiring first person stories. She's also their resident foodie, and loves covering exciting new beauty launches, too. Contact her at [email protected]