Operation Save Willy (and friends)

Hello everybody!!

My name is Ryan and I made this GoFundMe for getting a couple four-legged friends back to the USA and the shelter they are currently staying at. Its a very long story but I summarized the events as much as I could.

I am currently deployed and when I moved to this location several months ago, I met Wilson. He is an awesome and loving dog that I (as well as all of my guys) grew extremely close to. He was a father to seven puppies, the boyfriend to a dog named Anne, and is a close friend to most of us on camp. This is all changed drastically over the past several weeks..

I have been planning on bringing Wilson back to the states since the first couple of weeks I got to this location. I love animals and we clicked instantly. He would follow me around, come to work with us, and sleep in our tent with us. After speaking with my friend Joe back in the U.S, who is in the process of looking for a dog for his new home, we decided Wilson would be a great fit. 

Joe's Aunt happened to know somebody, who rescued dogs from this region of the world in the past, and provided the email address of a lady named Rasha.  Rasha owns/maintains a shelter that is several hours away from my location and pays for everything out of her own pocket. Just to give you an idea about "everything", I mean she pays for all food/water/ supplies for the 50-ish dogs she has living in kennels on her property, all medications, vaccines, and vet visits. Rasha and her friends build/maintain the kennels by hand, live with the dogs, and revolve their lives around these dogs. She works full time and relies on charities/organizations around the world to help her from time to time with dog food and other donations but unfortunately she does not get enough help. Rasha was bragging how she would rather spend the money she makes on the dogs instead of the "normal things to do" around this area, which is definitely not caring for or loving dogs. 

The shelter is over capacity due to the amount of dogs she rescues. Majority of the dogs their are Canaan's but their are several Shepherds, Pit bull's, Golden Retrievers and several other mixed breeds. Regardless of their breed, all of them are dogs who have a story. For example, I had the opportunity of playing with this dog that Rasha  named "Mrs.Robinson", who she will be keeping at her shelter. Rasha found Mrs.Robinson tied to a pole with a tight rope around her neck, and several open wounds scattered throughout her body. After getting her and going to the vet, they realized the open wounds were from a shotgun. Not all of the dogs in the shelter have stories like Mrs.Robinson but that is how people in this region of the world treat dogs. I am sorry for going into details but I am trying to paint a picture of what kind of situations Rasha gets into on a day-to-day basis. 

After emails between Rasha, Joe and I over the past month or so, we were establishing a plan to get Wilson to her shelter and back to the U.S.. Rasha was going to handle everything from vaccines, international health certificates, microchip, and everything needed for Wilson to travel to the U.S. All I had to do was figure out how I am going to get this dog to her shelter several hours away (and come up with a plan to get the money together).

Fast forward a couple of weeks, I find Wilson with several open wounds across his body. Several days after that, we found out late one evening that all dogs at our location (that is not owned by the U.S military) were going to get trapped and driven far off into the middle of the desert, killed or poisoned. I was told this is starting immediately so I found Wilson sleeping and ended up hiding him for the night with plans on leaving very early the next morning. Only problem was that I did not have Rasha's phone number yet and she was not answering my emails. Eventually, Joe got the number and once I called Rasha, she said to get Wilson to her shelter as soon as I can, even though her shelter is over-capacity. There was no room in any of the kennels she has built and did not have any empty kennels but told me she will figure it out by the time I get there.

Fast forward through a long night with Wilson, we ended up leaving early the next morning to the shelter. On our way there, I found two puppies walking in the middle of a highway so I picked them up and they joined us for the rest of the road-trip. I pull up to the shelter about an hour after I found the puppies to Rasha and her neighbors patching together a new kennel for Wilson out of left over fencing, cable and tarp from other kennels. She was very happy when she saw Wilson and surprised when she saw the puppies. I told her how I found the puppies in the middle of the highway and they were probably going to be killed if I did not grab them. Wilson is good with puppies so we decided they can go in the kennel with him.

Usually if someone wants to adopt a dog from her, Rasha and her friends will get money together and pay for all expenses. The bill can get very expensive because along with all of the health/travel documents (vaccine book, health certificate, etc.) she has to get together, she pays for the flight/travel fees to get the dog being adopted to its new home. Her life/job literally revolves around these dogs and she would not want life to be any other way.

After health documents, and everything else (just to get on a plane), Rasha broke it down and estimated it should cost around $2500-$3000 for Wilson and the puppies to get back to the U.S. Wilson has been put on worm medication and the puppies are going to get their shots/everything else they need. Depending on when all of the health requirements are completed, all three of them should be back in the states no later than the beginning of May.

All money raised from this will help get Wilson and the puppies healthy and back to the U.S., and help Rasha with travel and vet bills to get them healthy. The vet is not local to her so getting the dogs to the vet can be hard while also working a full time job. The extra money will go to Rasha to help pay for all of the vet visits, supplies for more kennels to rescue more dogs, get them healthy, care for the current dogs, and get them flights to their forever homes (which is usually in the U.S.).

***Rasha doesn't have a website/social media page to her specific shelter but if you search on Facebook *Al-Rahmeh for Animals", the dogs at her shelter are posted on their once they are healthy/healed and ready for adoption. "***

Thank you for reading and please share !!


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Ryan Powers 
Port Jefferson Station, NY
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