Sometimes, you stumble across things that utterly horrify and disgust you. Things that really make you wonder quite how 'civilised' we civilised human beings really are.
One such example is the plight of the Spanish galguerro hunting dog.
Galgos, as the Spaniards call them, are beautiful gentle greyhounds used in Spain for hunting and coursing hares. Affectionate, graceful and utterly loyal, these magnificent dogs are 'run' by the hunters for one season - and then they're brutally given the chop.
Quite literally, in some cases.
Although the Spanish could never be held up as good examples for the humane treatment of animals (bull fighting, anybody?) what happens to these out-of-date dogs is utterly disgusting.
Rather than keep feeding them, the Spanish discard them like trash. Burning them alive, throwing them onto a speeding motorway or, most horribly of all, stringing them up with piano wire and leaving them to starve and suffocate over the course of several days.
The way the Spanish treat these gentle animals makes you wonder if there is any humanity left in the world at all. It's utterly horrible.
Fortunately, a charity exists to try and help these poor dogs.
L'Europe Des Lévriers is a French charity which seeks to adopt and rehome these animals and raise awareness of what they go through. The ultimate aim is to stop the hunting and racing of the Spanish greyhounds - to take the Galgos out of the hands of the heartless monsters who abuse them. But in the mean time, L'Europe Des Lévriers seeks to rehome as many abandoned Galgos as possible.
In order to raise money and awareness for this noble charity, the Expat Brits of the Deux Sevres got together to organise a charity luncheon - and my mother played an integral role.
Hot and cold food was prepared by many kind volunteers. Paul and Sue Woods furnished plates, knives, forks and their catering expertise. Alan Peel was the highly qualified bartender and my mother helped organise the entire event with military precision. In the end, over 50 people turned up to enjoy the delicious food and meet some of the adorable Galgos and Podencos rescued by L'Europe Des Lévriers.
Over 1,600 euros was donated to charity organiser Beatrice Monnet and many more people were made aware of the needless suffering these poor animals go through at the hands of the cruel and heartless Spanish hunters.
You can read all about the luncheon here, at the Galgo News blog which is regularly updated by Galgo aficionado Beryl Brennan.
The website of L'Europe Des Lévriers can be found here. They can help with adopting a Galgo if you'd like to do so.
If you're stateside, rescued Galgos are also available for adoption here at the Tennessee chapter of the Greyhounds of America.