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What about the Mothers?

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Millie's Fund

crate pups
In the last year, MADRA have rescued over 200 puppies across Galway, with the majority being dumped in fields, ditches and pounds as their owners are unable to find them homes. Some of these pups were as young as four weeks old, and our constant question when we find them is “Where is the mother?” What’s happened to her? Is she grieving somewhere, wondering where her babies are? Will she be spayed so that she doesn’t have to endure another litter of unwanted puppies?
Every one of these cases takes their toll on us but one that really broke us was the death of 10 week old Millie.  She died after being dumped in a crate with her siblings at Ros a Mhíl Pier. The four of them were locked in the crate with bags of food next to it that they couldn’t get access to. Eating stones to survive, little Millie was just too weak after her ordeal to make a recovery.  To prevent more pups suffering like Millie, we have set up a fund in her honour, to spay female dogs across Galway.  We have pledged our entire Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and the Marine grant of €28,781 to the campaign.
Working in partnership with Galway County Council, we are now offering free spays for eligible* female dogs resident in Galway.

* What dogs are eligible for a free spay?

  • Females over six months old who are microchipped, licensed and resident in Galway
  • Collies, Terriers, Lurchers, or an identifiable crossbreed of any of these
  • If your dog hasn’t been microchipped, this can be done at a subsidised rate of €10 as part of the scheme.
  • Licences can be purchased at your local post office or online at An annual licence costs €20 and a lifetime licence €140.

Why should I spay my dog?

madra paw logo email recNo more heat cycles. A female dog in season can be messy and blood can be produced for several weeks. Heat cycles can occur every six months.
madra paw logo email recUnspayed females are at risk of uterine diseases and a life-threatening womb infection called pyometra. This can lead to urgent surgery and can have a fatal outcome if not detected in time. These risks increase as your dog gets older.
madra paw logo email recSpaying reduces the risk of mammary tumours (breast cancer).
madra paw logo email rec Spaying prevents the significant costs of dealing with an unexpected litter (feeding, worming, vaccinations, microchipping) or the costs involved if your dog develops pyometra or other infections due to not being spayed
madra paw logo email recRemoves the risk of unwanted puppies. Assuming zero mortality, in just seven years, a female dog and her offspring could produce 4,000 dogs! Ireland has a serious overpopulation of dogs; there are simply not enough homes for all the dogs being born here.

BUT ...

Will my dog put on weight?
After neutering your dog’s calorie needs will fall. Being neutered will not directly result in weight gain once food intake is reduced. 
Will spaying my dog change their behaviour?
Your dog’s personality will not change, but some unwanted behaviours which may be hormone-fuelled may decrease.
Will my dog still want to work?
A dog’s temperament, training, personality and ability to do “work” are a result of genetics and upbringing, not their hormones.
Shouldn’t my female dog have a litter first before spaying?
There’s no medical or behavioural evidence that suggests that there is any benefit to allowing a dog to have a litter. There is however ample evidence about the risks of pregnancy and labour.
She’s such a lovely dog, wouldn’t it be a waste not to breed her?
There’s no guarantee that her pups will be just like her and for all the reasons explained, it really is better to spay.
If you would prefer a hard copy application form by post, please call 091 509510 or email:
*Terms & Conditions apply. Please note an admin fee of €10 per household is payable to help cover the costs of processing.

We also have a gofundme page here that you can donate to and share!

If you would like to promote Millie’s Fund within your community or organisation, 
please email for support with this.