There is a zoo in the Armenian town of Gyumri that is unlike any zoo in the world. Yes, this zoo has cage after cage of beautiful animals. Some of the animals (like the lions) have young cubs. There are cages that have been decorated with paintings of nature settings and stone. Look through the pictures posted here and you will soon discover; this zoo will not bring smiles. This zoo brings heartbreak.
Owned by an Armenian businessman who lost his fortune; the zoo was abandoned. Overnight the animals were deserted and left to starve to death of to suffer from dehydration. Some of the animals are too weak to stand. Many are showing signs of sickness brought on by lack of food, water and from living in their own waste in their small cages.
The owner has not been found and the local government refuses to take the responsibility of caring for these animals; so they are left to die.
Hovhamnes and Alvina Madoyan had recently lost their jobs. One day they heard the cries of the lioness whose cubs were dying from dehydration and they went to her aid. In comparison their problems seemed small to the fate of the animals. The couple moved into a shed on the property and began tending the animals. They provided water and food. They rely on the food they can catch in the woods and local pond to provide meat to the animals, but it is never enough. They lean upon the kindness of strangers who make donations to help care for the animals. They do what they can.
Winter is harsh in Armenia. These animals are weak. Without help, the couple will not be able to save them. Many will not survive the winter. Winter will be hard for Hovhamnes and Alvina too as they try to live in a shed so they can be close enough to take care of the animals. If we all help a little, we can make a difference.
If you would like to help these beautiful and abandoned animals, there is a GoFundMe page set up to receive your donations. You can reach it by clicking here.
The authorities are looking for the owner and he will be held accountable, but the animals cannot wait. They need help now. Hovhamnes and Alvina are doing all they can do, but without assistance some of these animals will die.
Winter in Armenia is exceptionally rough, and how these animals managed to survive up until now is practically a miracle. If you’d like to help them, visit the official GoFundMe page and consider making a small donation.
Please share this to help bring awareness to the situation, and let’s try to help these poor animals.