"Creation of the first dog shelter in Sochi is an important step as it shows that business is concerned about social responsibility and animal rights," said Tamara Rumyantseva, the head of Volnoe Delo Foundation. "There is no water and electricity now, we have to bring water in containers and use temporary electrical generators. But we hope to move to the new place soon, with more comfortable conditions for animals."
But volunteers question how effective the shelter will really be for Sochi's strays. "The mayor made this shelter just to show that picture so that you could see and believe it like fools," said animal activist Gontareva Ekaterina. "It's not going to change anything. They're not doing this for the animals. People just want to eat and sleep good."
According to Volnoe Delo, all of the dogs are fed and given vaccinations. Volnoe Delo's shelter is situated in a sort of dog shantytown along with two other small makeshift shelters. But the shelters are far from perfect, says USA Today.
While the shelter has undoubtedly helped slow the extermination of Sochi's homeless dogs since it opened roughly a month ago -- and particularly in the past week, as focus has increased on the Russians' efforts to remove stray dogs from the area -- it is only a temporary solution, their caretakers acknowledge.
Still a shelter is good a step in the right direction for the dogs. Activists now say they are pushing for sterilizations and local adoptions. And some civilians are taking matters into their own hands and adopting stray dogs.
Find out everything you can do to help Sochi's stray dogs here.