Celebrities may not have real superpowers, but it appears that sometimes they may be the best people to fix really tough problems; especially in the world of animal welfare. Bob Barker uses his celebrity status pretty often to achieve normally unattainable goals for animals and now actor Mickey Rourke has pledged to do the same for thousands of suffering dogs in Romania.
For decades activists have protested, pleaded and negotiated with the Romanian government to stop slaughtering the estimated 50,000 to 100,000 stray dogs that live on the streets in the capital city of Bucharest. The dogs lead pathetic lives scrounging for food and being hunted down by dog catchers who are notorious for their brutal killings.
Activists have made progress, but when Rourke came face-to-face with the problem while filming his latest movie, “Dead in Tombstone” in the Romanian capital, the huge animal lover offered a solution that promises to vastly improve the lives of the strays.
Rourke vowed to raise 1.5 million Euro to build an enormous shelter for the dogs and he personally pledged a donation of $250,000 toward the facility.
The actor made the decision after a stray dog, now called Foxy, wandered onto the movie set. Rourke adopted the shepherd mix dog.
The shelter will be called The Wild Dogs of Romania Sanctuary and Rourke says it will be “as large as a football field and will be able to host thousands of dogs.”
The actor also guaranteed that “nobody will make any money from this investment.” He plans to return to Romania whenever necessary to see how the project is going.
Rourke has already found several partners for the project, including two veterinarians and a businessman. He is also in contact with an investor who will sell him a parcel of land in the southern section of Bucharest.
One day very soon, with a humane animal sanctuary and hopefully an aggressive spay and neuter program affiliated with it, the stray dogs of Romania will finally be safe.
Photo Credit: jrandallc