Latin America & Caribbean

Brazil slumdogs get own "favela"

Dogs outside tin shacks in Brazil
Image caption There's no place like home for these dogs

Hundreds of zinc-roof shacks dot a hillside shantytown, one of thousands of "favelas" that are home to millions of poor Brazilians.

But this slum in the southern city of Caixas do Sul is a home for dogs, not people.

An animal welfare charity set up the dog shanty town because it did not have enough money to build a proper shelter for the stray animals.

Around 1600 dogs live chained to an array of improvised tin shacks.

Natasha Oselame of the charity So Ama -- "Just Love" in Portuguese -- regrets that the dogs have to live in such conditions.

"We started out with the naivety of wanting to change the world, and the project just kept getting bigger, so unfortunately this is all we have to offer them" she said.

As in Brazil's human shanty towns, the main challenge facing the dog favela is how to make ends meet.

The cost of veterinary fees and 13 tons of pet food each month is far greater than the charity receives in donations and help from the local government, Ms Oselame said.

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