Uncertain future for Dogs at Gladno Polje Shelter in Sarajevo


Please sign the petition: Ensure the safety and health of dogs at Gladno Polje “shelter”, refuse change of ownership to Novi Grad Veterinary station; allow access to the shelter by independent rescuers and activists

The agricultural cooperative responsible for management of Gladno Polje shelter in Sarajevo did not sign a new contract for the shelter yesterday. We are informed this means the shelter will close, or will be transferred to another company. Either way, the prognosis for the 200+ dogs at Gladno Polje is dire.

10801687_379932732183613_2004348567224426053_nThe veterinary station “Novi Grad Sarajevo”, owned by the public company Lokom, has offered to take over the shelter. PC Lokom is owned by the municipality of Novi Grad Sarajevo. This company has established a notorious group of dog-catchers known as the “hygiene service”. This is considered by activists and rescuers to be a criminal organisation that kills stray dogs as part of money laundering activities (stealing funds that are meant to take dogs off the streets and into dog shelters for care. However, there are in fact no shelters able to take in more dogs, so what happens to the dogs, to the money?)

Authorities of the municipality of Ilidza will shortly decide whether they will allow the veterinary station “Novi Grad Sarajevo” to take over the shelter, but the fact that the agricultural cooperative has not signed a new contract to continue management means it’s likely the authorities of Ilidza will accept the offer. Gladno Polje will then be under the control of the vet Mustafa Mrkulic who is widely known – as well as PC Lokum – as “the worst illegal dog killers in Sarajevo.”

mainheaderGladno Polje is a shelter established by local authorities which only works because of the hard work of a tiny group of independent rescuers and activists headed by Sanela Kotorić Etterle, who fundraise for proper food, who go in and clean the pens and do whatever they can to improve what are horrific conditions, putting straw down on the cold concrete, and even giving water which is often not available (or frozen in winter).

The shelter’s requirements should be funded by the government, but no one knows where the funds go. Nevertheless, the activists have managed to maintain the dogs and even find homes for some of them.

10892019_955233547821769_7086032730255842381_nIf the shelter changes ownership to the Novi Grad Veterinary station, there is a very real possibility that rescuers and activists who are taking care of the dogs will be forbidden to enter Gladno Polje and that the dogs will be illegally killed to make room for more, who will then also be killed and so on. Please note that the Animal Welfare Law of the country does not allow killing in shelters unless the dogs are suffering beyond help or are a danger to themselves or people.

It is extremely important influence the authorities of the municipality Ilidza to reject the offer of veterinary station Novi Grad Sarajevo and to insist upon the safety of the dogs currently living in the shelter and on improved conditions, and to allow access to the shelter by independent rescuers and activists.

Please write emails to Prof. Senaid Memic, head of the Municipality in charge of Gladno Polje:


And you can also write to the members of the council listed on these page: http://www.opcinailidza.ba/vijecnici.html

You can also write emails to your embassy in BiH:
Find your Embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina:

Please sign the petition: Ensure the safety and health of dogs at Gladno Polje “shelter”, refuse change of ownership to Novi Grad Veterinary station; allow access to the shelter by independent rescuers and activists


Other ways to help:

Given the above photographs you might think the best thing is for the shelter to close; however what then happens to the dogs there? There is nowhere for them to go. Rescuers would need extraordinary funding and support to buy land and build and maintain a shelter for this number of dogs.

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Shelters in Bosnia Herzegovina
Saving the Dogs of Gladno Polje, Bosnia
Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?
Another Horror Shelter in Bosnia

Saving Lucia and the dogs of Foča and Gorazde
Dog Shelters in Bosnia: A Complex Situation
Horror Camps for Animals in Bosnia
Concentration Camp for Man’s Best Friend
Concentration Camp for Man’s Best Friend PART TWO
Mass Graves Found Near Dog “Shelter”
Hresa Shelter:
Part One – Part Two – Part Three – Part Four – Part Five – Part Six – Part Seven


This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

2014: What is happening to the strays of Bosnia Herzegovina?


Author: Dalida Kozlic, L.L.B, lawyer and activist

“The proposed amendments to the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals have not been enacted. Due to the complicated political and legal system in Bosnia, new members of House of Peoples have not been chosen. House of Peoples of the Parliamentary Assembly will form in early 2015. As soon as delegates are chosen for House of Peoples, legislation processes will be continued. This means that delegates will decide on the destiny of thousands of stray animals in Bosnia. These amendments are intended to mask the killing of stray animals that are already occurring.

There are many illegal shelters for stray animals that are formed and led by persons who have close ties and association with Bosnian authorities. Animals are effectively being tortured and killed in these shelters. Animals are beaten, cut, clubbed, raped or tortured in many other horrific ways. Animals do not have water, food, accommodation, they are freezing or they are exposed to extremely high temperatures. Also, animals are killed with wires, clubs, glass shreds, poison and also fire arms. While these atrocities happen, local authorities finance the people who own the shelters. It is money laundering. In addition, stray animals regularly killed on the streets. There are numerous cases of abuse of animals in Bosnia. Authorities do not do anything to find and punish animal abusers.

Most Bosnian shelters for stray animals are concentration camps. Recent photos from a shelter in Trebinje show that dogs are starved to death. The situation is the same in Foca, Jajce, Bratunac, Doboj, Praca, Hresa and other illegal shelters in Bosnia Herzegovina. It seems that no one other than activists and rescuers sees the suffering of the stray animals that are placed in these shelters.

Due to media coverage, a lot of people have been interested in adopting dogs from Prnjavor shelter, and thanks to the hard work of Bojan Veselica, who volunteers his time, the dogs are fed. There is also a fundraiser by AWABosnia to sterilise the female dogs there, as it is not possible to separate males from females. To help please go to: Sterilise the Dogs of Prnjavor Shelter in Bosnia!

UntitledI saved Lola and Honey from Prnjavor shelter

Some other shelters have the opposite situation. Dogs placed in Trebinje shelter are starved to death. The situation is also bad in the private shelter in Praca, near Sarajevo. Authorities of Canton Sarajevo subsidise the owner of Praca shelter to keep dogs, but all dogs live in awful conditions.

The situation is especially difficult because of corrupt prosecutors, police officers and veterinary inspectors who do not want fulfil their legal obligations and prove illegal activities in illegal shelters.

Sarajevo has become a new Bucharest. A notorious and illegal group of dog catchers was established in the municipality Novi Grad Sarajevo on 30th May of 2013. Since then, thousands of stray dogs have been killed in Sarajevo. These dog catchers have the support of the Inspectorate of veterinary Inspection of Canton Sarajevo and the Administration of Police of Canton Sarajevo. The paradox is that the veterinary inspection and the police, who are obliged to stop and punish illegal dog catchers, support them and protect their illegal activities. Activists are facing the hardest challenge ever; we are fighting against a corrupt system. Police officers and veterinary inspectors have charged activists with numerous minor offence warrants. Since their accusations are false and the warrants are not filled in accordance with Bosnian law, activists will prove that the police officers and veterinary inspectors are involved in criminal activities before the court in Sarajevo.

Stray dog caught by dog catchers are placed in a former military complex “Safet Zajko” in Sarajevo. Mustafa Mrkulic, a veterinarian, destroys the dogs in the veterinary station that is established and owned by the municipality of Novi Grad Sarajevo.

Untitled2Dog catcher was photographed during illegal activities this month. He was pictured using a special weapon for stunning of wild animals.



Car of illegal dog catchers was photographed on 9th December. Eight puppies were inside. Police officers allowed dog catchers to leave the police station and destroy the puppies. Activists are still searching for answers about this case.

Rescuers are in an awful situation. There is a mass media campaign against rescuers and activists in Bosnia. Some activists have been brutally attacked by dog catchers. Also, police officers and veterinary inspection are trying to stop them in their efforts to save as many animals as they can. Media is spreading a mass hysteria against dogs in Bosnia. Due to a mass media campaign and false information about the situation, citizens tolerate illegal dog catchers and their illegal activities.

The best description of the situation is that there is a complete anarchy in the country, while activists are trying to persuade authorities to stop killing and to find solutions that are in accordance with Bosnian law.

Also, there are many cases of animal abuse and murders that are committed by “ordinary” persons. Killing and abuse of animals is a criminal offence in Bosnia, but authorities are not interested in investigating the cases in order to punish offenders. It is not unusual to see the blood of innocent animals every day on the streets. The public is not interested and does not understand consequences of such brutal attacks on animals. Therefore a new approach is needed in Bosnia in order to stop the mass killing of animals.

The Bosnian Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals is in fact one of the best in Europe but no one is interested in applying the law. Corrupt authorities want to kill all stray dogs. A quantity of evidence has been presented to Bosnian police officers and prosecutors about illegal activities, but they do nothing. It is one of the worst violations of the criminal code in Bosnian history. I believe International focus and help is the only solution for animals in Bosnia. It is very important that international animal welfare organisations, embassies as well as individuals press Bosnian authorities to stop killing of animals.

UntitldadedThis dog had been living in Breza for years, before he was poisoned on 29th November. Many of my friends and I fed him. Criminal report was filled against unknown offender.”



Dalida needs our support to ensure she can continue her investigative work in documenting what is happening to the strays of Bosnia Herzegovina and in bringing legal charges against those who contravene the laws. To help please make a donation via Paypal to: eldar.kozlic1@gmail.com.

Dalida is also a rescuer and just a few days ago told us:  “It is very difficult period for me at the moment. The worst thing is that I am still unemployed. The situation is very critical and awful for animals in Bosnia. There is a complete anarchy in Bosnia. Activists are trying to persuade authorities to stop killing and find solutions that are in accordance with Bosnian law. Since I am focused on legal activities in order to stop torturing and killing of animals, my parents spend most of their time with animals. Most of my time I spend in Sarajevo trying to solve this awful situation with illegal dog catchers and killers. I have problems with my car and it is difficult for me to travel all the time, but I must. I will be updating photographs of animals during the beginning of January. The most important thing for me is to find safe forever homes for saved animals. I really need your help to find adopters for them. Also, I have enormous legal costs due to many legal activities. I take care of 74 saved dogs and 8 cats. 39 of saved dogs and 8 cats are on my property. 35 dogs are placed in pension. It would be impossible to take care of them without your help.”

This is one of Dalida’s rescues, Medi. This beautiful dog is 8 years old. While he was a puppy, he had rachitic rosary. Since his owner didn’t want to provide  veterinary care for him, his front legs are deformed. Due to  deformation of his front legs, it is difficult for Medi to walk normally. Medi is in Dalida’s vet’s pension (kennels). He is half blind and half deaf…. if you want to help please contact Dalida.

Related articles:

Animal Advocates Assaulted in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Let’s Respect Animals and their Right to Life

Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?

The “Aggressive” Dogs of Sarajevo
The Campaign Begins With a Slaughter: You will kill the dogs, but what will you do with the beasts?
Stray Dogs of Sarajevo to be Killed in Election Ploy
Stop the Killing of Strays in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Sarajevo set to become the next Bucharest
BOSNIA: kill and slaughter until the dog is no more…
Bosnia Killing Dogs – No Different to Romania!



Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.


Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.


This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.