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Animals who had a rough start…

This time the blog is about animals who had a rough start on life or for some reason doesn’t have an owner to take care of their beloved pets.

To know more about how to help animals who’ve suffered. I make my way out to Djurens Vänner in Kyrkheddinge to meet Ann Carlsson.

A volunteer worker

She’s been a volunteer worker at Djurens Vänner since the 90s. And it all started with her taking care of a cat from the compound. Which led to her attending a yearly meeting. There she signed up to help with home visits to owners who gave cats a new home.

All this to make sure the cats got a great new home. Eventually, she became a cashier and today she’s the vice chairman of the association.

I am curious as to why the animals end up here and how they get the help they need to find a new and better life.

Ann tells me they take in both cats, bunnies and guinea pigs. They share building with the Dogpound, they have a shared break room. That’s something that they appreciate a lot.

She says that there are so many outdoor cats that end up in getting hurt.

When the animals get taken in by the shelter, they get checked out by a vet and after they get food and the care they need, by hired staff and volunteers. All cats get neutered before they get a new home with a new loving owner.

Ann shows me around and talks about Djurens Vänner’s facilities. And there’s a separate wing for the cats who are ready to be placed in a new home.

That means that they are healthy, have recovered and have gotten fed, and if needed, medicine. Here people are allowed the come visit if they book time for visitation, and they are interested in taking care of a cat.

I wondered about what it is that makes people what to adopt a cat or other pet from Djurens Vänner?

Ann answers that they are people who want to help. It could be anything from helping a homeless cat to getting a friend to a family’s already existing pet. People who choose to help an animal from the shelter, usually tell us they feel so much better and secure about the adoption with the knowledge that the animals have been checked out by a cat.

Djurens Vänner wishes that everyone would castrate their cats. So 2-3 times a year they offer discounted castrations of cats. Their goal is that there will be no abandoned pets. If there wasn’t so many kittens born, then there would be a better balance, says Ann.

She continues on with the tour of the shelter. There’s a living room for cats that have been here for a long time. And a little-pets room.

There are cute little signs with every animal. I stop by a sign for a beautiful black cat, it’s named Rödda. Ann tells me that this particular cat came to them emaciated.

Her, now beautiful fur, wasn’t black when she came in, but brown and coarse due to the emaciation. It took a long time to nurse her back to health, but today this lovely cat sits here and waits for someone willing to take care of her.

While I’m here interviewing Ann, a family comes for a visit.

They’ve got a bunny at home, who would love to get a friend to play with. The shelter houses a cute little bunny called Minna, and who would fit this family perfectly. The family’s little daughter decided to rename Minna to Midnatt, so Ann wright’s the new name on the sign.

Both Ann and I think it’s a beautiful name. Ann goes to get some salad for the daughter to try and feed the bunny. And they really seem to click instantly. The bunny seems to be very curious and wanting to say hello to both the daughter and the rest of the family.

In about two weeks Midnatt (Minna), will move in with her new family.

I ask the mum of the family why they choose to help a bunny from this place. She says because it felt safe and reliable to know that the animals get vet care. And that they would like to help a bunny get a good life.

I ask Ann who they get the money to support this beautiful charity. She explains that through membership fees and people who donate various things to them.

Ann tells me that you can become a member for 150:- Skr for a singular member and 250:- Skr for a family. If anyone wishes to become a member and support the animal shelter then you can visit their website at

There are also monthly donors and people who donate things to their flea market and so on. That could be anything from old toys, food, cat litter. Or other things they have a need for, like soap, vinegar, and garbage bags.

I thank Ann for letting me take up some of her time for this visit. There are some real enthusiasts working here, who all have a great love for the animals.

Even though the animals may have had a rough start to life, I am convinced that when they get to the shelter, they all get a new start to their lives with loads of love and care.

// Rose-Marie Axelsson

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