SIMABO – helping stray dogs in Cape Verde

stray dogs

SIMABO is a non profit shelter and clinic for stray dogs and cats on the Island of São Vicente. They exist since 2008, employ 12 people and 2 volunteers. In the last four years SIMABO have led a programme, co-financed by the European Union, whose target is to spay, deworm and identify (with a chip) 80% of the stray animal population in the island, which, according to a census taken by SIMABO, amounted in 2012 to 12,000 dogs.

stray dogs

In four years they have managed to get very close to their initial target: 8,000 dogs have been castrated, dewormed and microchipped. A notable accomplishment especially considering that the association was mainly working alone, without much help from public institutions or from the Cape Verdean law itself, which do not protect in any way pets, not even when they have a guardian.

stray dogs

But the work of this association goes much beyond this campaign for free castration, they also offer an affordable vet clinic, an adoption programme and a shelter for street dogs and cats who have been injured and are not fit to return to the streets after clinical care. It was with happiness that Paolo, president of SIMABO Onlus, reported that that they have managed to eradicate the Sticker’s tumour from the streets with appropriate chemotherapy.

SIMABO’s precious work also includes raising awareness among pet owners with regard to the animal’s health and behaviour, such as for example, the need to use a leash to avoid car accidents. Since then they have noticed a decrease in the number of injured animals hit by cars.

stray dogs

The European funds came to an end in january 2015, but there is still so much that this organisation wants to do. The clinic receives every day animals that are victims of disease, accidents or bad treatment. Here they find not only medication and food but also, and more importantly, care and love. Everyone involved with this association is not just doing a job. Everyone is committed to help with the hope that one day street animals in Cape Verde are no longer sent to the public kennel for extermination when they are caught by the authorities. And with the hope that the population will stop abandoning their pets when they become ill or a nuisance.

stray dogs

SIMABO has been looking for options to finance the project. And there are many ways one can help them:

Stay at the SIMABO hostel when you visit São Vicente. We had a wonderful time there. The hostel is very well located close to the beach (Laginha) and it has got the particularity that it serves as a shelter to several cats. So you can also spend some time with these lovely creatures.

Work as a volunteer at SIMABO, part-time or full time. They accept volunteers from all over the world.

Send or bring with you goods and materials.

Donations are obviously important. You can donate via the bank account:

SIMABÔ Onlus, IBAN: IT23 S033 5901 6001 0000 0009 584 (BIC/SWIFT code: BCITITMX) or via PayPal with

If you would like to know more about SIMABO or how you too can make a difference, go to the SIMABO website.

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