An elderly police officer has warmed the cockles of Chinese netizens’ cold hearts by establishing a “retirement home” for aging police dogs.
Bai Yan is a police dog handler in Hangzhou who decided some seven years ago that something needed to be done for his trusted canine colleagues in their golden years. Previously, dogs that had become too old to work were adopted by the public or their former handlers. However, it appears that little was done to actually vet these new pet owners. Bai remembers seeing one former police dog who had been completely neglected by its owner, lying dirty and unkempt on the ground with a chain around its neck and a bowl of spoiled food at its snout.
Knowing that something needed to be done so that his furry friends could enjoy the retirement that they deserve, Bai began renting a plot of land out in the hilly outskirts of Hangzhou in 2010. There he established a shelter for retired police dogs.
Over the years, Bai estimates that he has spent around 1 million yuan caring for his dogs. Most of the tasks at the shelter, he performs personally, visiting three times each day, beginning at 4 am when he prepares breakfast. Later, he drops by to give the dogs their medicine and play with them out in the field. Most weekends and holidays he also spends at the “retirement home.”
Currently, Bai’s shelter houses 16 retired police dogs, all over 10 years old. In total, there have been 26 canines that have come through his facility. When speaking about his friends that have passed away over the years, Bai is unable to hold back his tears.
Though some people have offered to help fund Bai’s shelter, he has repeatedly refused any handouts, explaining that the dogs are his family and his responsibility.
[Images via Kankannews]
Follow Shanghaiist on WeChat