Going Green with Dogs in Nicaragua

Happy Earth Day! Not only is it Earth Day, but it is El Capitan’s (Cappy’s) birthday today. Read the story of his birth here: Plentiful Puppies

In honor of Earth Day, I found the Top Ten Green Pet Tips for Earth Day, although most of them do not apply in Nicaragua. I found four tips that are most helpful in Nicaragua.

The most important tip in Nicaragua: 1. Neuter your pet.  Pet overpopulation is a real problem—shelters are over-run and homeless pets are everywhere taxing environmental resources.  Only one in four dogs finds a permanent loving home.  When it comes time for your next pet, support adoption as part of a green lifestyle.

Cappy is one of the lucky ones. We adopted him a month after he was born.


He loves to swim in the lake with Ron.
IMG_6028He doesn’t have a clue how spoiled he is. He’s well-fed, unlike most of the dogs in Nicaragua. He was neutered at our house by our USA vet on Ometepe Island…for 300 cords! (about 12 dollars). Dr. Sara offers free neutering and spaying on the island. I only hope that more pet owners will take advantage of this service.

IMG_6166I miss our previous adopted dog, Conejo. Here was a post I wrote about him. Remembering Conejo.

IMG_2889The neighborhood dogs know where to come for a free meal. 2. Feed pets nutritional food.

IMG_3363Man’s best friend.
IMG_0505Some of the dogs are well-fed. But, in my observations, most of them are malnourished.

DSCN0637Everyone loves puppies in Nicaragua. The problems arise when they grow-up.

DSCN1109This was definitely not her first litter.

DSCN07843. Another green tip for pets is to stay cool. The heat can be brutal on dogs. Always make sure the dogs have fresh water and a shady place to rest in the heat of the afternoon.

Not all dogs are well-cared for in Nicaragua. Some Nicaraguans don’t understand the concept of a pet. Sad, isn’t it?

IMG_3886I hate to see abused dogs. I wish I could care for them all. It breaks my heart.

IMG_3633At any social gathering, the stray dogs seek out the tiniest morsels of food left behind.
Which is why it is important to 4. keep pets leashed and protected for their safety, the safety of others, and to protect wildlife.

IMG_0984Things are slowly changing for the better in Nicaragua. But, it takes time. Education is the key. We are going green with dogs in Nicaragua and trying to do our part. Happy birthday, Cappy! You couldn’t have been born on a better day to spread the word.

14 thoughts on “Going Green with Dogs in Nicaragua

  1. I read your beautiful post about your puppy and so happy for you! I adopted a few street dogs on Ometepe, and REALLY need to get them fixed. I’m having a hard time finding Dr. Sara’s information.. And was wondering if you could please provide me with her contact information as I am in Ometepe. Thank you so much!

  2. I don’t have any dogs, but have cats instead because it suits my lifestyle better. But I hate to see any animals abused. There’s no excuse to do that. Some of the animals where I live are in terrible shape too. It gets 115 here in the summers and they have no shelter to get under from the sun. The same goes for the winter when temps are in the single digits with snow sometimes. These kinds of people don’t need animals to care for, but there is little done about it here.

    • Sunni, I think that for the most part it is a lack of education in caring for their animals. Even the local vets don’t understand the need to keep medicines refrigerated. Pets are a new concept in Nicaragua. Poco a poco. We’ll continue to try to live by example. Thanks for your comments.

  3. LOVE this post :). Dogs have a very special place in my heart. We plan to move down to Panama in 2 years and I already have quite the plan in the works to open a dog shelter! Even have a couple of veterinarian friends willing to come down a few times a year!! I can’t wait. We took a month long trip down in January and I couldn’t stand seeing all the malnourished pups. I dumped my breakfast on the ground for them more often than not.

  4. WOW…poor little dogs, in Bali it was the same ….skinny ,malnourished and not taken care of .
    Its the culture , but they still need to be educated ,,and I really think its also a compassion issue!
    I’m noticing from your photos that Ometepe look like it’s a far cry fro being green and lush..I was hoping to see more green ,or is this what happens in your dry season?
    Your dog is very ,very lucky!!!

    • Yes, Cappy is one of the fortunate dogs. Heidi, we are at the end of the dry season. Six months with only a few sprinkles of rain. So it is hot, dry, and brown, brown, brown here. Water is rationed every April. We are fortunate to live lakeside and to have a gravity fed water tank. But, so many others are not as fortunate. I was talking to a friend yesterday who told me that their pueblo well is dry. Hundreds of people have no water, so they have to carry in their water from other small villages. This is the worst time to be in Nicaragua. The dust is horrible, too. I have to laugh because I don’t paint a rosy picture of March and April in Nicaragua, but people should be aware that this is NOT the best time to visit.

  5. My wife, Connie, and I are heading up Animal Advocates of Pedasi. We just had a Spay Clinic in conjunction with Spay Panama and sterilized 72 cats and 108 dogs. We have fundraisers and so far we have raised over $10,000, in the past 18months, for education and spay events, this is in a village of 2,000. Check us out on Facebook.

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