Once a Podenco ....Always a Podenco!


The Podenco is one of the oldest breed of Spanish hound and one of the most abused.

They suffer as much as the Galgos.

There are far more Podencos than Galgos in Spain, although sadly they are often overlooked in the perreras (public shelters) when rescue associations arrive to save dogs.

The Spanish still don’t accept that Podencos make wonderful companion dogs and so their only hope of forever homes is outside of Spain.

For this reason, podencos are generally the first dogs to be euthanaised in the perreras.

Podencos come in both smooth and wire coated varieties and there are also several smaller breeds. The eyes of a Podenco are a striking amber colour and they have an alert and intelligent expression.




A huge pack of ex-Spanish hunting dogs will march to the Spanish Embassy and 10 Downing Street, London on the 1st of May, the International Day of the Podenco, in protest at the mass abandonment of hunting dogs in Spain.

Families who have adopted abandoned Spanish hunting dogs in the UK will gather with their dogs in Belgrave Square, central London at 11am this 1st of May to mark the International Day of the Podenco. They will march with their dogs to the Spanish Embassy, 39 Chesham Place at 12pm and on to 10 Downing Street for 2pm to protest about the cruel treatment of the podencos, galgos (Spanish greyhounds), pointers, setters, bodegueros and other breeds that are abused in their lives and discarded in their thousands upon thousands every year in Spain. The marchers will deliver letters of protest and a photocard petition of other Spanish hounds now living happily as pets in the UK: a chance to give the dogs adopted in the UK a voice to speak out for their brother and sister dogs suffering every day in Spain.

The International Day of the Podenco Peaceful Photo Protest for Spanish Hunting Dogs is part of an ever expanding international grassroots advocacy campaign calling for an end to the cruelty, for increased animal welfare education in Spain and the urgent widespread implementation of Spanish and European legislation that does exist.

This campaign is grateful for the new support of actress, author and activist Joanna Lumley:

The appalling treatment of Spanish Hunting Dogs strikes a chill to the heart; it is impossible to believe that a country as sophisticated and fine as Spain could tolerate such unforgivable cruelty to living creatures. I add my name to the many who are calling for this inhumanity to be stopped once and for all - Joanna Lumley OBE

The podencos and their fellow hunting breeds – used for hunting in packs for rabbit and wild boar or for hare-coursing - are victims of overbreeding, neglect, cruel training techniques and a culture that sees them as throw away tools. Excess or “failed” dogs end their lives thrown down wells, hung from trees, dumped beside busy roads or rounded up to the kill pounds. Why maintain a dog after the hunting season when new ones can easily be acquired? Accurate statistics are hard to obtain, but the annual numbers of deaths for podencos and galgos together are estimated anywhere between 100,000 – 150,000 by those trying to help the dogs. Of these the podencos – the huge-eared noble, athletic, loving clowns of the hound world are the most numerous, most invisible and the most unknown outside of Spain.

The 1st of May London protest is a Facebook-led campaign initiated by Podenco Alliance and Podenco Support South West. The protest is supported by others from amongst the numerous Spanish and international refuges in Spain, the increasingly vocal group of Spanish activists, film-makers and individual Spanish police and lawyers who are trying to turn the tide of animal cruelty in Spain, and by many of the online community of fundraising and volunteering individuals working to rescue and re-home the dogs. All involved in the hunting dog plight call urgently for action that will change the root causes of the suffering – for education, and for effective animal protection legislation and convictions for animal abuse.



Rosa and Lupi are part of the delegation that will hand in the Peaceful Photo Protest for Spanish Hunting Dogs photocard petition and protest letter directly to No. 10 Downing Street on the 1st of May, International Day of the Podenco. Below are their photocards. As two UK-adopted podencos marching in London with their families, they will call on the UK Government to ask the Spanish Government to take urgent action to end the cruelty towards hunting dogs in Spain. There are also marches for the Spanish dogs taking place in Manchester and Glasgow on the same day.

Rosa photo card
Lupi photocard


Podencos across the pond speak out with UK-adopted podencos for the hunting dogs suffering in Spain.

This is a story of a Podenco named The RedBaron (below). He was found in Spain by British expatriates, helped by a British refuge in Spain and adopted by an American to the US. His story was sent for the 1st of May International Day of the Podenco protest by Sabine Ludowigs of the German-US led Facebook site “The Million Paw March for Justice”, that has 20,500 members. People across the world are calling for an end to the suffering of the Spanish hunting dogs.

“A Podenco was discovered emaciated, dehydrated, lying on a sandy beach, presumed to be dead. He had clearly lost the will to live. Linda Edwards discovered him and the more dead than alive dog was brought to Podenco Friends with Beverley and Warren Farmer. It was discovered that his front right leg had been caught in a trap and broken – probably the reason why he had been thrown out and abandoned by his previous owner who had no further use for an injured dog and who would certainly not waste money on medical treatment. God knows, there is an endless supply of other dogs as they are bred uncontrolled and unaccounted for by the thousands every year. The bone had already fused and could not be repaired. The dog received all the love and care he so badly needed and after the incredibly short period of six weeks of rehabilitation, made the trip to the US to be welcomed with open arms into his forever home with Kristi Eaves and is now the dog he was meant to be. His name is “The RedBaron”.

FC Shane Eaves BARON 00
FC Shane Eaves BARON 02

More Information?

If you would like to cover this story in more detail, I can send you a comprehensive NOTES FOR JOURNALISTS pack with a photo of Joanna Lumley (to go with her supporting quote), powerful images of rescued dogs in Spain and those adopted in the UK, film clips, stories and case studies, a call for change from a Spanish policeman, an article from a Spanish lawyer, a story from a UK vet nurse/fosterer living in Spain, statistics, information about the organisations involved in this campaign, dates of other international marches.

This London march follows on from Paris on the 23rd of April and Gettysburg USA on the 28th of March. More are planned throughout Europe all summer.

Polly Mathewson
W: Podenco Alliance
T: 07811 094 166
E: pollymathewson@hotmail.com
T: @podencoalliance
F: Peaceful Photo Protest for Spanish Hunting Dogs on the Day of the Podenco

PA - Back Page of Book

Get ready for the International Day of the Podenco everyone! Join us in London to speak out for the abused hunting dogs of Spain. All informantions about London on our event page here - Peaceful Photo Protest for Spanish Hunting Dogs https://www.facebook.com/events/1678285669110066/.

Also links to May 1st events in Glasgow and Manchester. Please share.

 This is an initiative of Podenco Alliance and Podenco Support South West, with thanks to SOS Podenco Rescue for designating the 1st of May as the Day of the Podenco.
We would like to ask all UK adopted and fostered podencos, galgos and all other Spanish rescue dogs to take part in our peaceful photo campaign of protest at the treatment of hunting dogs in Spain.
Please send us one email for each of your dogs with a short statement of their story to yellowdog.greenplanet@gmail.com

We will format them as per the postcards below.
The first 500 cards will be funded through Podenco Alliance fundraising efforts. If we receive more photos we would like to ask those who can to help with donations.  


The march will start to assemble at 11 am in Belgrave Square. The Spanish Embassy is in the southern most corner of the square at 39 Chesham Place, SW1X 8SB.
In the centre of the square is a gardens.

The nearest train stations are:
Victoria, mainline and underground.
Knightsbridge, underground.
Sloane Square, underground.
Hyde Park Corner, underground.

At 12 noon the march moves to the front of the Spanish Embassy. After the formalities are completed there, the march sets off for 10 Downing Street.
The march should arrive at Richmond Terrace opposite Downing Street at 1.30pm. All marchers remain here whilst our delegation enters Downing Street to submit our petition, letter of protest etc to number 10. We 'estimate' that this shall occur at approximately 2pm.
Once this is completed, the march shall disperse from Richmond Terrace.

You shall be in the heart of London and this could be an excellent photo opportunity for anyone attending.
Please join us on the day

For Spains hunting hounds.