Natalia George founded Flori’s Friends in 2015 and has since dedicated her life to rescuing abused and neglected animals. Having now rescued and rehomed over 1500 dogs and cats from across Britain and Europe, here is a sneak peek into what each day is like running an animal rescue charity.
After I get up, before I do anything else, I have to clean and feed all the animals in my personal care (I foster a lot of animals myself!), so the first hour or two is spent cleaning litter trays, changing bedding for the poorly animals, making sure each one is medicated and fed, and walking the dogs in our care.
At some point in each day, I usually have a trip to the vets as we take in so many sick animals, there’s always someone that needs some treatment. I also take emergency calls for animals in distress and go out in our animal ambulance to assist. We get a lot of stray dog calls, which I am usually able to reunite with their owner as we all carry chip scanners in our vans.
Some days I am out setting cat traps for feral colonies as we rescue a large number of stray cats, living on the streets in the UK, and rehabilitating them into pets.
I spend several (too many!) hours each day behind my desk processing new animals, talking with our shelter staff about each animal’s needs for a new home, writing adverts for them, as well as taking care of the adoption paperwork for those that have just adopted. It really is a never ending task, dealing with everything that needs to be done and ensuring each animal gets the individual care that they require.
I also spend a big chunk of my day with our transport team, organising our monthly runs – bringing dogs in from Europe requires a big organisational process. In fact, it’s safe to say that my job is extremely hectic and varied as I have to get involved with all the different activities required to ensure the smooth running of the charity.
And it doesn’t stop in the evenings. I specialise in aggressive/nervous cats and dogs so I often spend late nights gaining their trust, for example, I will eat dinner next to them or I will sleep on the floor with them etc.
It’s fair to say that doing what I do, my days never really end. Sometimes as soon as I get into bed and turn the light out, the emergency line rings and that’s me out of bed on a call out!
Whilst there’s no denying that it’s hard work, I love what I do, and knowing the difference the team makes to our animals’ lives makes it all worthwhile. In fact, I can’t imagine doing anything else!
Find out how you can help support the work of Natalia and her team.