THE STORY OF ALLQO LLAQTA
Volunteer rooms, rescue centre kitchen and medical clinic
Street dogs in the central market of Urubamba
Older street dog in Urubamba
When was Allqo LLaqta created?
Allqo Llaqta was created at the beginning of 2018. Here are our non-profit registration documents (Peru):
What does “Allqo Llaqta” mean?
“Allqo LLaqta” are Quechuan words that translate as “Dog Land.”
Quechua was the main language family of the Inca Empire. It is still the most widely spoken language of the indigenous peoples of the Americas, including the Quechua people here in the Sacred Valley of the Incas (Peru) where our rescue center is located (the Sacred Valley runs between the town and Inca ruins at Písac, westward to Machu Picchu).
How was Allqo Llaqta created?
Here are the words of our founder, Fabrizio Cartagena:
"I arrived in Urubamba in 2010 and opened a small veterinary office, located near the main square. (Urubamba is the largest town in the Sacred Valley of the Incas in Peru.)
One of my first emergencies was a stray puppy that had been hit by a vehicle travelling at high speed. The puppy was black and had suffered a devastating impact, causing him to lose his left eye and fracture his left front leg. I took this animal to my modest office and did my best to help him. I closed the eyelid to try to save his eye, and I also set the fractured leg. Little by little, after a few days the puppy was recovering. Because of lack of space and comfort in my office, I could not accommodate him comfortably and he escaped. For a long time, I did not hear about him.
Over the months I started to work with the municipality of Urubamba. I was in control of the sanitation of the meats sold in the market. One day, almost three years after the accident I ran across him in the market. He immediately recognized me and greeted me in a very enthusiastic manner. He was limping, and his eye had fallen out, and he only had a small hole in its place. In Quechua the word CHURCHU means one-eyed, so I baptized my little friend as "Churchito."
Time passed, and every time I went to the market to check on the vendors’ meat, he would eat small pieces of meat during our games and petting. This routine continued for a long time. At one point I saw that a good-hearted vendor had welcomed Churchito and let him spend nights at the base of her fruit stand. During the day, he wandered around the town.
On a Saturday morning, someone called me on the phone. The distressed voice of a girl asked me if I would attend to an emergency involving a stray puppy. Of course, I said yes. She said that she had found a puppy that had been run over near the market. She also thought that he might have been poisoned as well. When she told me that the dog she was referring to was black and had only one eye, I immediately knew that it was my little friend. When I arrived at the market, I could see with great sorrow that the puppy was indeed Churchito and immediately saw that he did have signs of poisoning as well as an injured right leg. He had been resting under a car, and the owner of the car just started the car, seemingly without caring about the welfare of the animal, and had run him over. I took little Churchito to my office as quickly as I could to give him first aid. I administered intravenous serum, rehydrating vitamins and all I had at my disposal. Sadly, despite all my efforts and after three days of fighting, Churchito died.
The life this brave little dog led could have been so different if the people who tried to help him would have had a home or shelter for him. That's when the idea of opening a shelter (or temporary shelter) for stray dogs was born. We especially want to give them the opportunity to be adopted.
In the last few years, I have been gaining self-knowledge about natural medicine. I have had the idea of a shelter, to help street animals, those without owners, or elderly animals, where I would use natural medicine to give them have a better quality of life and a place where they can take refuge.
This is how the idea of a shelter for street dogs was born here in the Sacred Valley. For a long time I had postponed this dream until I found the opportunity to rent a plot of land and start the Allco Llaqta project."
Why was Allqo LLaqta created?
"During the time that I have lived in this beautiful valley, one of the main problems that I have observed, and one that many of the tourists who have passed through our area mention, is a large number of street dogs. Many of them, despite having an owner, are exposed to the risks of the streets.
For a long time, I have tried to help solve the problem by giving talks to primary school students, as well as offering free deworming campaigns. I always try to raise awareness among the population about responsible pet ownership.
In the last two years, through conversations with other organizations, I was able to help coordinate sterilization campaigns with the World Vets organization with veterinarians from Canada and the United States, reaching nearly 300 animals in the two campaigns.
Thus, seeing all the efforts that are being made aimed at the entire population and their pets, the idea of opening a rescue centre and temporary shelter for dogs was reborn with great force."
About the Founder
Fabrizio in the rescue centre
Fabrizio in his veterinary clinic
Fabrizio with one of the Canadian volunteers
"My name is Hugo Fabrizio Cartagena Pinelo. I am a registered veterinarian and zoo technician. Obviously, because of the career that I have chosen, I have always cared about animals.
In the year 1998 when I was still in University, some friends and I founded a guanaco and vicuñas protection association. For many years I worked with these animals. Unfortunately, more than ten years ago, due to health problems, I was forced to abandon that part of my career. I am now dedicated to the care of pets, always with the intention of personal and professional growth. I try to study continuously in both official and self-taught manners.
The time that I have lived in this part of the Sacred Valley has allowed me to understand that when you help defenceless animals, the universe and God will know how to reward you and that there is nothing more rewarding than the unconditional love of a rescued animal.
There are many stray dogs here. Either they do not have a home at all, or they have a home, but they are still allowed to roam the streets. This entails great risks for the animals: poisoning, which is a very a widespread practice in this area; risk of being run over; unwanted pregnancies or fights with each other.
If we want to improve the condition of street animals, we must do it strategically, by both helping people to be more aware of their pets, and helping animals to have a better quality of life."
About the Canadian web designers
Corinne in Urubamba
Nikki in Machu Picchu
Corinne and Nikki in a home-stay on lake Titicaca
We are the team that created this website for Allqo Llaqta Rescue Centre. While travelling through Peru, we stayed in Urubamba where we had the opportunity to meet Fabrizio. He was the veterinarian who helped us in our attempt to rescue a street dog and take her back home with us to Canada. We were impressed by the attentive and gentle care that he gave her, and all pets of every variety in his clinic. He treats all his patients and their owners with so much kindness and compassion. With such a busy veterinarian practice we were surprised when he told us that he is going to open a dog rescue centre. We visited the centre’s property and saw all of the construction well underway. We felt a kindred bond with Fabrizio as it is also our dream to help as many dogs as possible. We saw an opportunity to help fulfill this shared dream of ours by creating this website for him. We hope you like this site and that it may inspire you to get involved with the Allqo Llaqta Rescue Centre’s efforts to rescue, rehabilitate and find loving forever homes for homeless dogs in the Sacred Valley.