Network for Animals is making a big difference to the health and happiness of dogs in Vrygrond, a poor area of Cape Town. The people of Vrygrond have a high unemployment rate and live in difficult conditions; for many children in the area toys are the stuff of dreams and the family dog, their playmate. Vrygrond families love their dogs and share their food with them, but veterinary care is far beyond their means.

Working with TEARS, a local animal welfare organisation, Network for Animals has pledged to help spay and neuter Vrygrond’s dogs, and provide medical care when we can.


In three months, Network for Animals assistance to the neglected dogs in the poor area has resulted in 30 dogs and 18 cats being spayed or neutered. In addition, Vrygrond’s dogs have been treated for parasite management (predominantly worms and fleas), enucleation (the removal of an eye), treatment of injuries from motor vehicle accidents, X-rays and bandage changes, vaccinations, treatment of skin problems including mange, burn wounds and hot spots, and the treatment of a face tumour.

Spotty, one of the dogs featured in the video report above, was sterilised and treated for mange, then returned to his family. His owners are being counselled on the proper care of dogs. All dogs in the video are being monitored on a weekly basis.

David Barritt says that it’s hard to overstate the importance of the help Network for Animals supporters are giving the dogs of Vrygrond:

“The contributions our supporters make, mean happier, healthier dogs. We are making progress but we still have a long way to go.  Because of the unhealthy conditions in the area, the dogs often get sick and so we have tried hard to stretch our budget to give improved medical care and to educate the local people about the proper care their pets need.”


“The good news is that we are winning; we just have to keep plugging away.  We are very fortunate that the volunteers from TEARS are truly dedicated.  One of the most wonderful things about our work in Vrygrond is to see what a difference dedicated dog lovers can make and how grateful the dogs and their owners are.”

“In an ideal world we will spay or neuter every dog in the area and with the continued help from our supporters, I really believe we will achieve that goal.”