Dogs in Istanbul
  • ZinjaZinja
    Posts: 1033
    I went to Istanbul for a week and noticed A LOT of stray dogs that live amongst the people. Naturally, I took a ton of photos and wanted to share them with you all. I also spotted a few Kangals. I really liked a lot of the dogs there.

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    I think these guys were breeders of Kangals.. Not sure what their purpose for having them was. Their bark was menacing! I was on top of the Castle of the Seven Towers
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    The salesperson (some local trying to sell people on an Istanbul tour) overheard me saying that these dogs had behavioral problems. He told me I was incorrect and continued to reflect light on the ground, trying to amuse the tourists and the dogs. I felt bad for the dogs because they kept running after every reflected light or shadow.
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    I wanted to take this white dog home. One of the locals said he was a stray and I was free to take him if I wanted.

    And this was a common sight. I'm surprised nothing happened to any of the dogs.
    -Joe
  • shibamistressshibamistress
    Posts: 3663
    Great pics, thanks for sharing!

    I saw some pics of the dogs being teargassed during the protests, which was sad. :(
    Lisa, Toby (Shiba), Oskar and Zora (American Akita), and Leo (Kai Ken)
  • ZinjaZinja
    Posts: 1033
    I, thankfully, did not see that. I was staying at a University house and we had security guards all over, which is close to Taksim Square.

    I can now tell people how teargas tastes like.
    -Joe
    Post edited by Zinja at 2013-06-08 14:25:03
  • BradA1878BradA1878
    Posts: 12224
    Cool pictures! Looks like a pretty place to visit too. Thanks for sharing!
  • LosechLosech
    Posts: 2082
    I'm a bit surprised at now few of these dogs look skinny and emaciated. Were there any and you just didn't share pictures, or were a lot of them actually really fat like that? Or are the fat dogs owned...
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    Post edited by Losech at 2013-06-08 15:11:19
  • aykayk
    Posts: 1979
    Some of the dogs had tags in their ears. Does that mean they're owned? Rabies-vaccinated?
  • ZinjaZinja
    Posts: 1033
    The tags are dogs that the government fixed and are color coded.

    People in Turkey loves dogs and will feed them... Just no one wants to keep them. Most people live in apartments and I was told it's very difficult and expensive to keep a dog.

    I did not see any skinny dogs or cats. I wanted to take home a kangal. I did meet a professor that would help me import one when I'm really serious

    http://northeasternuniversityjournalism2011.wordpress.com/2011/06/15/some-try-to-limit-the-number-of-strays-in-the-city-by-spaying-and-neutering-but-150000-still-roam-the-streets/
    -Joe
    Post edited by Zinja at 2013-06-08 16:17:41
  • EsperchanEsperchan
    Posts: 69
    Wow, those dogs are all so cute! I could never live somewhere like that. My house would soon be overflowing with animals i took in!
  • CrispyCrispy
    Posts: 1833
    One of my friends was born in Turkey when her mother and father were stationed there. She had a similar experience to @Zinja - many Turks are very friendly toward the dogs (and they toward people), but tend to be unable or unwilling to take them home.


    Most of her experience with dogs in Turkey was with military dogs - Kangal (and possibly Boz?) dogs that were able to look down into the cars going into base.
    Akiyama no Roushya || 秋山の狼室 || www.kishu-ken.org
  • TRDmomTRDmom
    Posts: 77
    Thanks for sharing the pictures! It was a nice surprise. :D

    Street dogs are a common sight in the city. The tags in the ear mean the dog has been vaccinated and altered. It is mainly done for safety reasons (for humans), but it is also good for the dogs. You actually do not see many underweight animals. They will hang out near trash cans, get fed by kids (and kids at heart), and also can follow their noses to the many local restaurants. ;) Most dogs will keep to themselves, but develop friendships with local shop owners and residents. The light chasing is a game enjoyed by many people and animals (both dogs and cats). You'd be surprised by the amount of grown men who are excited by this game! They look like little kids!

    FYI, keeping a dog in your home is a foreign concept to most Turks. Keeping dogs in the home has been gaining popularity though, usually in the big cities. In the rural areas, most dogs stay outside... kind of like most people here don't keep horses in the house.

    @Zinja - thanks for the taste of home! :)
  • ZinjaZinja
    Posts: 1033
    I was very surprised how many German Shepards I saw walking with the crowds including the tourist areas. They all seem very friendly.
    -Joe
  • abacabbabacabb
    Posts: 9
    This thread is really cool. Glad to see the strays get basic vet care, and get fixed. It's too bad there are do many strays but they seem well fed and liked around there at least! That really chunky one cracks me up for some reason
  • ZinjaZinja
    Posts: 1033
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    Poor puppies. Some people setup stations in Kabatas (close to Taksim) where they had special solutions to flush out the teargas. (image was taken from a news site)

    edit: Does anyone know what type the bordercollie looking dogs in my original post was? They were fairly big, probably 90lbs. I only had my fisheye lens and didn't get very close.
    -Joe
    Post edited by Zinja at 2013-06-09 16:59:21
  • TRDmomTRDmom
    Posts: 77
    Most street dogs have a Kangal base that have been mixed with various other dogs. The generations of street dogs are so numerous that is difficult tracing the ancestry.
  • TrzcinaTrzcina
    Posts: 331
    I love seeing pictures of street dogs from various parts of the world. Very cool!
  • ZinjaZinja
    Posts: 1033
    So.. I saw this video and I thought of this post:



    I read "Kadar" which is "Thank you" in Turkish.. I was surprised I remembered it.
    -Joe
  • I love that video/idea! And I like that the government is stepping in and taking care of some of the stray dogs by vaccinating them. We need something like that here!
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    Keanu- Shepherd/Golden Mix & Mika- Kai Ken
    Living in Vancouver, WA.
  • Unfortunately the dogs in Turkey are not treated very well. I see in some of your photos, that some have been re-released (after being spayed/neutered, etc) - My friend lives in Turkey and works with Dog Rescues there. The state some of those dogs come in :( - I suppose in my biased way, I have seen some pretty horrible stuff.
    A lot of people abuse the homeless dogs. (At least, outside Istanbul; and mostly done by children or teens really) - But, then, I think this is also to do with culture and history of certain places. I understand that many Turks probably value cats more than dogs. Of course, that can all change, many young Turks are very prosperous and modern.
    I really hate going to places with stray animals (cats and dogs), but then, I understand at the same time why they're strays (or, the mentality that people have to release dogs/cats outside. The idea that the climate is warm and therefore they can survive off the land, etc.) I'll meet people with that kinda mentality here too, which annoys me. I guess I have a hard time seeing any animal on the street, to be honest. Last night there was a cat fight in my front yard!! My friends always complain that I don't let my cat out when he is moaning to go out...hmm, maybe cos I don't want him to get into fights!?

    It's hard. I remember in Chile, there was this white Molossus dog that I fed bits of lunch meat too, I nicknamed him Rocky (cos he was muscular and had some scars on his face). He was a sweetheart but I noticed the dogs were actually hiding the meat I was giving them, probably saving it for when they really needed it!
    Post edited by poltergeist at 2014-07-23 05:50:20
  • I think you guys would also enjoy this: http://youtu.be/YxJf2L2B5fY
    Kinda cool that these dogs figured out that the centre is full of people willing to feed them. Maybe it's the same everywhere else in the world with stray dog population?

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