The dream of a slower-paced life on an idyllic island was shattered the minute Alison Sawyer Current got a glimpse of the neglected cats and dogs on the island of Isla Mujeres, Mexico. Instead, to date, Alison and a handful of volunteers have rescued and brought hope to over 12,000 of these animals. Her remarkable true story comes to life in The Dog Lady of Mexico, which shares the real-life efforts behind the rescues as told through the character of Rose, and details the almost insurmountable obstacles that were faced in an attempt to help these poor animals.
What they encountered after their move was an island overrun with starving, neglected and abused dogs and cats—unsterilized, unwanted animals that wander the streets and are considered a threat to the community’s health. Their unchecked breeding brought more and more puppies into a world where they’d be destined for the same miserable life. Rose couldn’t sit by and watch, and soon started helping in whatever way she could.
Rose’s experiences accurately reflect the tireless journey of author Alison Sawyer Current, who began rescuing in 2001. Her valiant efforts to help dogs and cats grew into the nonprofit Isla Animals, which offers free spays and neuters, low-to-no cost veterinary care, arranges adoptions, and runs owner education to help whittle the number of animals destined for the same existence.
The problems Alison encountered were numerous. There are no veterinarians in many areas, so most of the animals are never vaccinated or treated for parasites. The average dog is thin, mangy, and tick and flea infested. Needless to say, they are not welcome inside the home so even dogs that have owners are subject to the same conditions as street dogs. Since most of the people can’t afford a car, and taxi drivers refuse to pick up passengers with dogs, they have no way to get to a veterinarian … and the cycle just goes on and on.
Readers of The Dog Lady of Mexico will experience a world very different from their own, and will see firsthand the blood, sweat, tears and, yes, even laughter, that accompany such massive rescue efforts. They get to share the journey of Rose, whose life takes an uncharted course into unknown territory, and experience the passion that changed a life forever.
Alison is a recipient of The Doris Day Animal Kindred Spirit Award, and in 2007 she was invited to Mexico City for the first Forum on Small Animal Overpopulation in Mexico. To date, Alison has spayed or neutered more than 20,000 animals and promoted adoptions in Mexico, the United States and Canada.
To learn more about Isla Animals or to find out how to support their programs, please visit the website www.islaanimals.org