Dogs in the manger

Shortlist 2016

Anton Klimov

Anton Klimov is a photographer from Irkutsk, has been photographing since 2005, tried many genres and focused on documentary photography. In 2015-2016, he received training at the School of “DokDokDok” on the programme of “Documentary Photography and Photojournalism”. He works with the theme of ecology in a general sense, the main interest is the interaction of living organisms among themselves and between living organisms and environment. Is the winner of “Young Photographers of Russia – 2016” contest. Is the holder of the diploma of the jury of “Point on the map. Small towns” contest of Photo parade in Uglich in 2016.

The Problem

Dogs in the manger

December, 2015 there was an incident in the dog shelter of the settlement of Karluk located in 16 km from Irkutsk. For numerous violations of animal welfare the contracting firm was suspended from the management over the shelter. About 800 dogs were left to die of hunger and cold. The catching dogs system is arranged as follows: the Russian government puts out tender for searching of a contractor. A contractor is obliged to catch a neglected animal and get it to the shelter. Then they have to make vaccination and sterilization of a dog and leave it after the operation under special conditions. Further it is necessary to keep it for six months in the shelter and then let it out. The tender is won by the company which offered to execute piece of work for the minimum quantity of money. So the municipal contract was entered into a pact with Perspektiva-Avto OOO. However the company was going to do nothing except capture of dogs. According to eyewitnesses its workers generally stole dogs therefore in the shelter there were a lot of dogs in dog-collars and even with scraps of leashes. Also they put an ad pasting up announcements in order owners of dogs bring their animals which have become needless, and people also pay money for it. Animals were managed in awful conditions. After animal rights activists raised a question of non-performance of obligations by the contractor, they just left the territory of the shelter. All December the shelter was served only by one worker and volunteers. At the expense of volunteer means it was succeeded to persuade two more workers to work on January holidays. Now the shelter is functioning only because of the volunteer movement. They gather food, covers and straw for warmth keeping of doghouses, come to help in feeding the dogs and care for them. During the New Year holidays, about 10- 30 volunteers came to the shelter every day. Since December, about 200 dogs were taken to other shelters or given to new owners.