I am an American-Irish solo world explorer who travels with her rescue pup. This is a place for dog & travel lovers to come together to share tips & more. We want to inspire you to go on adventures with your best (furry) friends!


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Adopting a Puppy from Takis Shelter

The Nomad Pup is here! Everyone meet Atlas. He’s a little bundle of joy and excitement. He’s settled in great in the past few days he has been here after adopting him from Takis Shelter. I love him so much. He’s sleeping at my feet right now as I write this! After planning this for so long it is crazy that I finally have my little pup!

Atlas on the first night I got him!

Takis Shelter

I adopted Atlas from Takis Shelter in Crete, Greece. Takis started his shelter after he saw so many dogs who were living in the rubbish pile. He began feeding them regularly but the locals complained about them. He used all of his savings to buy a plot of land and Takis shelter began! Now he has over 300 dogs, 40 cats, and 2 goats at his shelter.

The Dodo, a company that makes feel-good videos for social media, profiled Takis in one of their videos. This helped his Facebook page take off and now he has over 250 thousand people following along his journey. Yet he does it all himself. Until recently he did not have any volunteers. Now there is one woman who is helping him and there are plans to build a new house that can house 3 volunteers.

The video by the Dodo about Takis

Takis refuses to turn away any dogs. They have nowhere else to go. He takes the sick and the weak and tries his hardest to save them – and he saves many. At the shelter, Takis has one dog with a wheelchair so he can walk even though his back legs are paralyzed and he has cancer in his face. The dog, Black, isn’t in pain though so Takis makes the best life possible for him.

Even though all of his dogs are happy, Takis says himself a home is a home. Yet, I am surprised how few dogs of his get adopted. He makes sure the ones that do get adopted go to good homes who will love them. Even though he has so many dogs, he said I could bring back my puppy if for whatever reason it didn’t work out, no questions asked.

My Adoption Story

My first introduction to Takis Shelter was the video of him by the Dodo. After following him on social media for a while, I decided to start my journey in Crete because I saw how many dogs were abandoned and needed help on the island. I started following a few other shelters in Crete as well. The Souda Shelter Project and Noah’s Little Ark being two amazing companies led by women who dedicate their lives to rescuing dogs on Crete.

My plan was to wait until I arrived on the island and visit the different shelters to decide which puppy to pick. My puppy ended up picking me first though. He was abandoned on the side of the road with his three sisters. The woman who found them called Takis and said she couldn’t take them, so of course, Takis went to get them. I fell in love with the fluff ball at first sight.

This is when Takis first picked up my puppy. He is the fluffy one!

I messaged Takis on Facebook and told him I had an interest in adopting the puppy. He said I could adopt him and he would wait until I arrived in about a month. I followed along with his progress in the videos Takis posted.

Adoption Day

Finally it was time to go to Crete! I had a few days on the island myself until I rented a car. Once I got the car, the next day it was off to Ierapetra. I am staying Chania which is on the North-West part of the island. Ierapetra is South-East so it was a three and a half hour drive away.

I met Takis at a store before he showed me the way to his shelter. We had to stop part way so I could leave my car and go in his 4W drive car as the road was too rough for my little rental! As soon as we stopped two little dogs greated me, they have the run of the road leading up to the shelter.

A quick clip of the view of the shelter as we were driving in

As you drive to the house, you see the whole shelter to the right of you. It is a large piece of land with different areas for each group of dogs. They are all barking and following along with the car at the fence with their tails wagging. The pictures don’t do the area justice as it is very large and beautiful. There’s still room for Takis to expand as well.

In the house and the run next to it is for the puppies and most vulnerable animals. While I was there, I met a blind cat, a sick dog, a three-legged dog, a mother & her newborn puppy, and lots of older puppies! I saw my puppy right away and he was as cute as expected!

The puppies playing at the shelter!

While Takis fed the dogs, I spent some time in the shelter talking with the volunteer. I played with all the puppies. One of Atlas’s sisters was still there. Takis rescued two puppies from the rubbish pile when they were only 2 days old and they were so big now! Several other small puppies were running around as well.

Taking the Puppy Home

When it was time to go Takis gave me food to last the next few weeks and a deworming pill. I also got the container from the vaccination he got so I could show it to the vet. Then it was time to go!

I put the little puppy in his carrying case and placed it in the seat next to me so I could watch him. He did get sick in the car ride at the beginning, poor pup. He slept for almost the whole car ride which was great. Now here we are!

Little Atlas on one of our first walks!

Adopting from Crete

I highly recommend going to Takis Shelter to adopt a dog no matter where you are from. It amazes me how he can have such cute puppies there that no one wants to adopt. In the shelters in Ireland and a lot in the US, people adopt puppies as soon as they are available, while in Crete the puppies wait months to be adopted, if they even are at all.

This adorable puppy is looking for a home right now. He was thrown in the rubbish at 2 days old. He was the sweetest and fell asleep in my arms. He fell into the water dish which is why he is a little bit wet! Too cute!

Many people have come to the shelter to adopt and brought their new family member back to their country. Consider looking outside your country to places where adopting is not as popular if you are looking to adopt a puppy!

If you have any questions about adopting a puppy, Crete, or Takis Shelter, let me know! Send me an email or message me on my social media.

Where you will usually find Atlas, asleep on my lap as I work!

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