You've probably heard the sad stories coming out of Russia regarding the existence and treatment of stray dogs near the Olympic Village in Sochi.
After learning that dogs were being rounded up and killed by local authorities, many kind-hearted souls (some very wealthy) and rescue organizations have sprung into action. If you're wondering how you can help, here are a few options.
Donate to the Cause
Sometimes, due to distance and your own life situation, the best and most realistic thing to do is locate a worthy group and send them a donation. This can be a wonderful and very beneficial way to make a difference, so check out the Humane Society website for more information about the shelters that have been set up in and near Sochi and also find out how you can donate to help street dogs all over the world.
Adopt a Dog
Adopting a Sochi stray is probably most feasible for nearby Russian citizens who won't have to worry about air travel, but if you're curious about what the process would entail, read on to start educating yourself.
International travel generally requires bringing the pet to a vet in order to obtain rabies vaccines and the necessary paperwork, an airline-approved travel crate needs to be purchased, and a reservation needs to be made with an airline equipped and willing to transport pets from Point A to Point B. You'd also need to get the dog from Sochi to an international airport, so it's likely the whole relocation would involve a few people and cost several hundred dollars, at least.
This process can't be completed overnight and there are several considerations at play, including whether or not the dog is crate-trained. Again, this may not be a realistic choice for everyone, but if you have questions about anything, feel free to ask!
Good News Update: According to the Wall Street Journal, several Olympic athletes have decided to adopt dogs they met in Sochi. Read more about it here.
Have you made a donation to help the stray dogs of Sochi? Has this story inspired you to help homeless dogs in your own area? Tell us what you think.
Stray dogs wrestle outside the Bolshoy Ice Dome in Sochi, Russia
(Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)