Meet the Hero Who Drove Two Thousand Miles to Save Dogs from Being Slaughtered

Igor AyrapetyanDoing what I do for a living, there’s absolutely no shortage of “bad news” that comes across my television or computer screen every day.  The world can be a really ugly place.  That being said, when I have time, I like to try to highlight good news stories when they cross my path.

Though even this “good” story was born from a heartbreaking one.

Many people might not have heard about the disgusting slaughter of stray dogs that’s been going on in Sochi.  While it’s been mentioned in bits and pieces in the “mainstream media,” it’s largely been ignored.

Sure, we know all about the pointless exploits of Justin Bieber, but the inhumane slaughter of thousands of dogs – eh, the media will give that 2 minutes in the second to last segment of their broadcast, if they talk about it at all.

Keith Olbermann, however, has made it a point to emphasize this disgusting behavior on his show, and I recently wrote a fairly lengthy article detailing some of the horrific facts Mr. Olbermann pointed out during these broadcasts.

A heartbreaking fact I hadn’t even thought about until Mr. Olbermann brought it up was that most of the dogs being slaughtered were probably the friendliest ones, as they’re the easiest ones to catch.

In that article I mentioned a gentleman who had driven from Moscow to Sochi, loaded up as many dogs as he could (11 was the total), then headed back to Moscow where they could be adopted and saved.

Well, his name is Igor Ayrapetyan.  And while some might not consider him a hero in the same way a firefighter, police officer or member of our armed forces is – to me he’s still a hero nonetheless.

He drove from Moscow to Sochi, an over 2,000 mile trip, to save as many dogs as he could.  He’s now working hard to find each of these dogs homes.

This story has particularly struck me because I am a huge animal rights person.  For someone to intentionally abuse, neglect or kill innocent animals, to me, is absolutely reprehensible.

Animals, for the most part, are in the situations they’re in and behave the way that they do because of how we treat them.  Many strays are animals that someone abandoned, or offspring from an abandoned pet.  When you run across a dog that’s aggressive toward humans, they’re usually that way because of how other humans have neglected or abused them before.

Trust me, every stray animal would much rather have a loving owner, a warm place to sleep and a reliable food source.

So when I read these stories about the thousands of dogs that are being shot with poison darts in Sochi (with reports by some witnesses that the poison makes these dogs suffocate and die a very slow, painful death), exterminated like “pests” by a pest control company, it turns my stomach.

But I wanted to take a moment to commend Igor Ayrapetyan, and others who are trying to save some of these dogs, for their efforts to do what they can to save as many dogs as possibly.

In my eyes, they’re heroes.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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  • LMB

    Though I think this man is absolutely amazing for saving these animals and what is being done to the strays there is absolutely disgusting, we can’t pretend that dogs and cats aren’t being slaughtered here as well. Everyday our shelters euthinize thousands of healthy dogs and cats (about 4 million a year), toss them into plastic garbage bags and haul them off to the dump simply because they don’t have a home and the city doesn’t want to deal with them. I recently learned how horrible the situation really is when we went through the process of adopting a puppy. Our slaughter just takes place behind closed doors, but it is a slaughter none the less. Some cities are better than others and thankfulky many have become or are working toward becoming No Kill, but many aren’t. I happen to live in one of the worst ones where one of our two shelters kills an average of 13 pit bulls A DAY plus 5-7 other dogs of various breeds per day. That’s over 2500 dogs in less than six months.

    People please PLEASE adopt, spay and nueter your pets, do not rehome puppies or kittens without altering them first, make sure your neighbors pets are altered, because if you are outraged by what’s happening in Sochi, but do nothing to help our animals here, than you are no better than them.

  • Jason Fraser

    I thought the Russians had better sense than to squander time and resources on something as worthless as dogs. Igor Ayrapetyan seriously needs to GET A LIFE!

  • Arthur

    Jason Fraser, ever the degenerate.