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Why not helping people instead?

Helping people in need is a noble cause. There are plenty of people in Romania and across the World that need help. Our charity focus is animals in need while many other worthy charities focus exclusively to help the people. However, our charity also helps people. We have a complex way of helping people, covering various groups of ages: coloring books distributed for free for kids from schools and preschool classes; ABC online guide (in Romanian) for kids and parents who use online tools, freebies on various topics that secure and improve animal welfare; a national study created to improve communication between dog pets and their owners. Financially, we provide free spay/neuter for pets owned by people with low income from rural areas The FriendsForever program offers financial aid for seniors with low income to help them keep their furry buddies close and never be forced to abandon them. We also provide emergency relief during disasters (e.g. floods) for pets and donate clothing and food supplies for people from the affected areas. Before COVID, we visited rescued dogs and the seniors from local retirement homes to cheer them up. People who adopt dogs from our shelters have also a positive experience that reflects on the well-being of their whole family.

Is ROLDA an international organization?

Yes. ROLDA became an incorporated charity in Romania in 2006. Same year, Romanian League in Defense of Animals, Inc. became a 501(c)(3) tax-deductible organization. Years that followed, volunteers from around the World set up the following branches:

In addition, ROLDA has ANBI status in Holland. A very active group of supporters is established in Switzerland under the name of Association ROLDA Suisse, led by celebrity Lolita Morena, who is also a member of ROLDA’s Board of Directors and a member of the Swiss Animal Protection Board.

Does ROLDA work in other countries except Romania?

Yes, we have a dedicated group of volunteers working in several European countries, the UK, and Australia. They act as ambassadors for ROLDA, fundraise, and help to raise awareness of the horrific conditions Romanian stray animals face. In Romania, we help the community to understand animal abandonment and cruelty issues and we inform them of the compassionate, humane ways we have of dealing with overpopulation. We help other Romanian charities with small, repeated grants. After the war started, ROLDA expanded its rescue mission abroad for the first time, offering regular support to a dozen Ukrainian rescuers.

Does ROLDA work with any other animal protection organizations?

ROLDA is an independent not-for-profit organization and is not aligned financially or structurally with any other international organization. ROLDA Romania closely works with the other ROLDA branches located in Australia, the US, the UK and several other European countries.

Swiss Animal Protection is a constant grantmaker of ROLDA Romania’s branch. We also closely work with international charities like Cathy Kangas Foundation for Animals, Lady FreeThinker, Global Giving and SPCAI.

Starting in 2021, ROLDA expanded its support to a number of charities from Romania and Ukraine. Check here whom we help.

What is ROLDAs relationship with the authorities?

Periodically, ROLDA shelters fall under the supervision of the Romanian National Veterinary Authority’ inspectors. Unbelievably, but in this moment, Romanian laws are currently directed against the humane methods of homeless animal control advocated and implemented by ROLDA. We hope that some Government authority will decide to start a serious, constructive, and open dialogue regarding the management of the monumental problems of strays. And of rampant animal abandonment and abuse in Romania. ROLDA is always open to sharing our vision, our humane policies (and the reasons why they work, where mass slaughters never have) and our extensive experience managing local stray populations.

ROLDA actively encourages input from local communities, and those individuals concerned with animal welfare here and around the world. Sustainable, meaningful change to create a more compassionate and peaceful future depends on the involvement of people from all walks of life, and any interested or affected organizations.

I want to get involved

Does ROLDA offer any volunteer opportunities?

Yes. Volunteers are the heart of our charity and we just don’t have enough words to explain how important volunteer work in our rescue mission is. Join us!
1. On-site Volunteers: Visit our shelters and you will have the proof that dogs do smile. Please contact us at to discuss what opportunities suit your interests the best. We don’t cover (yet) health insurance.
2. Virtual Volunteers: If you can’t travel to Romania if you don’t know if you have the special skills to help a charity, but you have a big heart, a clever mind and the motivation to contribute to the homeless animals’ cause, if you have some spare time to share with us, don’t waste a moment – contact us!

There are so many ways in which you can help us e.g. photographer, graphic designer, fundraiser, marketing advisor for the online and offline market.

I would like to build a shelter for animals. Can you help me?

ROLDA works in Galati area, one of the poorest regions of Romania where the homeless animal population is estimated to be a few thousand. While we focus exclusively, to maintain the current facilities and start new projects in this area, we applaud other initiatives. And more, we help regularly a number of small charities from Romania to survive economically and continue helping animals in need in their area. For sure, Romania needs more open-minded, educated, responsible leader activists to create additional animal facilities. Please be aware that you need an efficient business plan. The beginning enthusiasm must be replaced with a determined attitude. A well-designed animal facility costs a lot of money, you need to find investors and reliable partners and build up a community that will offer constant support because, after the initial building costs, you need money to sustain the shelter/project. You can find useful tips on RSPCA International website  But remember: the wellbeing of your animals should come first, not your personal emotions. And your first quality should be endurance. Good luck!


What if donations received are above the goal’ limit?

Each project has an estimated goal. In case the goal is reached, the supporters are announced and any further donation is redirected, with donor’s permission, for a similar goal or for “general purpose”.

How can I verify ROLDA is a legit organization?

Transparency is one of our top guiding principles. For the activity conducted in Romania, you can find the last Financial Report (as well as previous years reports) on the official website of Ministry of Finances (, searching ROLDA under the registration number: 18416340. Alternatively, you can find the Financial Report at: and the latest Annual Report:

The bookkeeping service in Romania is externalized, meaning that we work with independent institutions or experts that keep accurate financial records each year.

A number of people from around the World (including representatives of corporations, media or diplomatic missions) wrote testimonials after visiting our shelters. (

How do I know my donation is used for its purpose?

Our charity asks for donations for specific goals like winter food supplies, repairs, veterinary costs to treat a specific dog, aid supplies for the pets of poor communities. When you donate to a specific goal, your donation is marked accordingly. When you choose to make a donation for general purpose, you give us the freedom to put your donation where it’s most needed. The existing ROLDA donors know we use their donation for the highest possible impact.

ROLDA adoptions

Why should I adopt from Romania when our country shelters are full?

Statistics show that people, who adopt dogs from abroad, actively help the local organizations and have adopted at least once from their local shelter.

I want to adopt a dog from ROLDA. What is the procedure?

The adoption procedure is slightly different, from country to country. Please read carefully this article: international adoption before applying. Please complete the pre-adoption form and send it by email to the closest ROLDA branch along with your questions about the adoption procedure. You can also contact ROLDA office in Romania by email: or WhatsApp: 004 0748 903 612

How are animals transported?

By special equipped van (authorized by the national veterinary authority in Romania) from Galati to Bucharest airport (3-4 hours driving). By airplane to the adopter’ destination.

How much is the adoption fee?

It varies from one country to another. ROLDA currently rehomes only in Switzerland, Sweden, the UK, and rarely in the US. Please get in touch with the closest ROLDA branch for more info about the adoption costs and procedure. Or feel free to contact us directly at ROLDA’s Head Office in Romania at or by phone/WhatsApp: 004 0748 903 612.

Why is there an age limit (23 years) to adopt from ROLDA?

ROLDA is unfortunately short on foster options, despite the fact that our ROLDA team works tirelessly to make sure that all adoptions are 100% successful. Common reasons some adoptions may not go through are a lack of money, and/or personal income, and occupying a rented property where animals are not allowed. Young people (under 23 years old) are exposed to these circumstances the most. This policy is just one of ROLDA’s precautions to safeguard the wellbeing of our animals, and to ensure that both the adopted animal and the adoptive individual have a 100% positive experience. We do encourage young people (under 23 years old) to adopt, but this important decision must be supported and sustained, (including financially) by a parent. They act as a guarantor to ensure the animal in question is provided for.

About romanian animals

Why are there so many strays in Romania?

Primarily due to poverty, the number of homeless animals here has skyrocketed. Population numbers are neither efficiently, nor effectively controlled in many countries in Asia, South America, Southern and Eastern Europe. Due to a lack of education, homeless animal populations are not humanely controlled. No thought, nor consideration, is given to the suffering these creatures have endured on the street.

Romania has by far the worst stray overpopulation issue when compared to all the Eastern and South Eastern countries in Europe. Tragically, the situation receives far less attention and media coverage when compared to countries like Greece, Turkey, and Spain. Primarily because Romania is not a major tourist destination. There are no outsiders to see the pain endured by our abandoned and abused animals. They sadly remain out of sight, out of mind, and of little interest to the international media.

In the Romanian situation, the first large groups of strays appeared in the 80s during the communist regime (under dictator Ceausescu). During the cities’ industrialization, thousands of families were forced to move from their native villages to small apartments. These people left behind their properties, their houses (with a small, but subsistence level garden) and at least one family dog that served as companion and guardian.

During the forced relocation of Romanian rural people, thousands of dogs were abandoned as they were not permitted in the tiny urban apartments. During the 80s, attempts to control the dogs’ population were poorly managed using barbaric, brutal methods. Gas chambers, and primitive electrocution procedures sentenced tens of thousands of dogs to slow, agonizing deaths. Dogs were boiled (sometimes still alive) to be skinned for industrial purposes. Starting in the 90s, after the fall of the communist regime, the increased number of strays represented no priority for a new breed of politicians who predictably were content to turn a blind eye to the dogs’ suffering. Until the election campaign.

What is the current strays' situation in Romania?

Since 2001, little has changed. The public shelters administrated by the local authorities continue to be filthy, overpopulated and most don’t respect the minimal standards clearly specified by the European applicable laws. Dogs from public shelters “disappear” mysteriously, are killed with methods that the animal activists can’t verify. Legally, in public shelters, a dog can be euthanized after 14 days. Often, the dogs die of starvation, eat each other, or die because of untreated diseases, wounds, poor hygiene before the 14th day.

The only positive change is the law approved in 2013, which declared mandatory, for dogs with human companions, the followings: sterilization, identification by microchip, registration of the microchip in the national database called RECS.

The number of street dogs in Romania is extremely high, estimated to be some millions. The poorest areas (north, south-east of the country) have the highest number of strays.

After ROLDA created the first modern private shelter in Romania, it is encouraging to see that others, mostly foreign citizens helping Romanian animals, followed us and built, in different communities across the country, a few quality facilities for rescued animals.

While the poverty, lack of education and corruption exist, it is difficult to control efficiently, humanely and responsibly the strays’ overpopulation at national level.

Why doesn't the local community offer financial help to the shelters in Romania?

30% of Romanians live on the very edge of extreme poverty. The average monthly income of a person in rural areas is a little over 200 EUR per month. Housing options are very limited, and essential services like electricity, gas, etc. can be unreliable. People living in the countryside/villages fare the worst. They are 3 times poorer than people living in towns. 1 of 3 children is living in poverty in Romania. The poorest regions in Romania are the north-east of the country and the south-east; this is where ROLDA is operating and where we believe we can do the most good.

There are, of course, many animal lovers in Romania. However, the costs involved in simply registering a dog with the authorities, providing vaccinations, microchips (as required by law) and sterilization are far beyond the financial means of most people, especially in rural areas. With so many children and families in need, the general public and the government turn a blind eye to the suffering of millions of strays.

Source here:

Are street dogs dangerous or friendly with cats and other small pets?

Our staff assess in the best possible way a dog behavior before being promoted for adoption. We use our knowledge, experience and available resources to do this. Because we respect each living creature, we can’t be asked to make experiments and see if a dog attacks a cat or not. This will be a very stressful situation for everyone, especially for the cat. We can only observe if the dog has killing instincts, or hunting instincts more intense than “normal”. Please remember that many strays remain alive on the streets because they were hunting their meals. Most of the dogs chase smaller animals – it is important to distinguish if they chase to kill or chase for fun. It is the adopter responsibility to supervise how the dog will interact with the cat (or any other smaller pet from inside the house).

Are street dogs dangerous or friendly with kids?

Our staff members carefully assess each dog that comes into our care to the best of our abilities. We have over a decade of experience working with abused and stray animals, and have successfully rehabilitated and rehomed many hundreds of dogs. We believe that giving an honest and professional evaluation of a dog’s behavior before promoting them for adoption greatly increases their chances of finding a suitable home. We don’t use children in “experiments” to see how a dog behaves in the company of kids. The parent/adopter must keep children and their new furry friend under strict observation to avoid unpleasant incidents. These can sadly occur with any dog, or other pet, regardless of the animal’s background or breeding. Rescued dogs often make the most loyal and loving pets. So many former street dogs are forever grateful for receiving simply a cozy bed, healthy meals, and a safe place to call home. You alone can give hope to these deserving souls.