A dog shelter gets a warm response to its appeal for homes for its pups during a cold snap in Poland

Category: Human Interest


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. freeze / friz / (n.) – a period when the weather is extremely cold

    Most of the vegetables I planted got destroyed during the freeze.

  2. take (someone) by surprise / teɪk baɪ sərˈpraɪz / (idiom) – to surprise someone because of something happening unexpectedly

    The unexpected arrival of her long-lost friend took Maria by surprise.

  3. drove / droʊv / (n.) – a large group of people or animals that move or act together as a group

    The shoppers rushed to the store in droves when they heard about the big sale.

  4. broadcaster / ˈbrɔdˌkæs tər / (n.) – a media organization that shares news and information with the public through radio or TV broadcasts or the internet

    The local broadcaster announced the news about a major traffic accident on the highway.

  5. headquarters / ˈhɛdˌkwɔr tərz / (n.) – the central office or location of an organization, company, or institution, where main management activities happen

    The company’s headquarters is located in New York City.


Read the text below.

With a deep freeze approaching, an animal shelter in Poland sent out an urgent appeal to people to adopt or at least temporarily shelter some of its dogs until the dangerous cold spell passes.

The result of what it called “Operation Frost” took the shelter workers by surprise. Over the weekend, people arrived in droves, waited in lines for hours, and ended up taking home 120 pups, the shelter’s deputy manager Małgorzata Pałetko said on the TVN24 broadcaster.

The KTOZ Shelter for Homeless Animals sent out its appeal on January 5 as temperatures were forecast to fall to around minus 20 degrees Celsius (minus 4 degrees Fahrenheit) in parts of southern Poland, where Krakow is located. It said it had about 300 dogs, but not all could fit indoors and some were in outdoor pens. It appealed for temporary help so that all of the furry ones under its care could find space inside.

On January 7, the shelter announced that it was suspending the operation because it was able to fit all its dogs safely in the warmth, and asked the public to help other shelters who needed similar assistance. “We are extremely grateful and moved,” it said.

City police showed up on January 6 to manage the traffic outside the shelter, according to TVN24. In the end, the officers took an adorable brown pup named Mombaj back to their headquarters, posting on social media that it had been a “beautiful and emotional day.”

Pałetko said the shelter did its best to find good matches between the animals and the people. “We are keeping our fingers crossed that at least some of them will stay with people permanently,” she said.

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • What factors do you think contributed to the overwhelming response from the public during “Operation Frost” in Poland (ex. people’s compassion toward pets, effective media coverage)? Discuss.
  • If shelters sent out an urgent appeal to people to adopt or at least temporarily shelter pets in your country, do you think it would receive the same response? Why or why not? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • Pałetko said the shelter did its best to find good matches between the animals and the people. Why is it crucial to consider the compatibility of potential owners when placing animals in new homes (ex. to ensure the safety of pets, to promote long-term commitment)? Discuss.
  • If there was an “Operation Frost” in your city, would you be willing to adopt a pet temporarily? Why or why not? Would you also consider keeping that pet permanently? Why or why not? Discuss.