Anne & Her Puppies – Istanbul, Turkey

Anne & Her Puppies – Istanbul, Turkey

posted in: Dog Stories, General News | 0

A cuter family could not be found!
Kutman (male), Diane (female), and Yalin (male) are 11-month-old siblings that resemble miniature Anatolian Shepherds.



They were born to a street dog named Anne (which literally translates to “mama”) in Istanbul, Turkey.

Anne was found at approximately 6 – 8 months old, already pregnant. She was badly malnourished and shockingly, her ears had been sawed off with an unknown instrument – to this day, Anne carries the secret of her torturous treatment, as no one was ever found responsible.

Lucky for sweet Anne, ISDF friend Aysin Gnaegi came across Anne. She knew she could not leave this poor soul on the streets in her condition.

Since that day, Aysin has moved heaven and earth to make sure Anne – and eventually, three out of her five puppies – stay safe safe. This has been no small feat indeed – it has taken a toll on her and her family in many ways.
But she was determined to help this little family, which just goes to show what is possible when one feels passionately compelled to make a difference.

A year has passed, and these four lovely dogs are finally about to embark on a journey which will hopefully result in true security and happiness at last.
Aysin and her family are actually traveling from Istanbul to Chicago, bringing these four lucky dogs with them, on April 9th.

Mom and her three almost-grown pups are now in search of forever families. They are all friendly, loving, and playful, yet with calm demeanors.
Anne is hardly older than her babies, at just one and a half years old.

Although in looks, they closely resemble a native breed known in the USA as Anatolian Shepherds (Anadolu çoban köpeği in Turkish), in size they are actually smaller than purebreds – each family member weighs approximately 50 – 60 lbs.

Anne and Family’s Rescue Story

Aysin is an animal lover who lives in Istanbul, Turkey. One day, Aysin found a mama dog on the road. Her ears had recently been sawed off and were still covered in dried blood. Mama was clearly pregnant, but also starving.

No one knew how she ended up on the streets nor who cut off her ears – and no one was helping her. Aysin knew she must help this sweet girl. She searched for help, as she could not house Mama herself at the time, but no safe haven was to be found. Therefore, Aysin vowed to feed her and care for her in her current location, an area of many dogs where roads meet forest, until she found a better place for Mama – whom Aysin named Anne (Turkish for “mama”) to live.

Aysin actually feeds the street dogs in this area regularly. She returned as frequently as possible, providing food to fatten up Anne, and watching for any signs of impending puppies.

She arrived one day to find Anne had clearly given birth overnight – yet there was no sign of her pups. It took Aysin time to locate them, but ultimately, she found five babies. Knowing they were in danger where they were living, she stepped up her efforts to desperately place the small family into some sort of shelter. However, just before she could do so, she returned one day to find two of the little ones missing.


A frantic search for answers ensued. To this day, Aysin has only been able to learn that the two missing puppies were tragically stolen to be used in dog fighting – Anatolian shepherds are a muscular breed and this little family was attracting the wrong kind of attention.

Aysin had to act immediately. She coaxed Anne and her three remaining puppies into her car, where she drove them to the safety of a pet hotel. There, she and her family paid to board them, and she visited them regularly, also paying for their growing food and medical requirements.

It should be noted here that mixed breed street dogs in Turkey have close to no luck in finding homes.
No one is interested in adopting mutts; culturally they are the unwanted dogs. People prefer purebreds; they buy them from breeders or pet shops who breed or import from overseas.

Even purebreds, however, often end up on the streets after people decide they are too much work or have lost their baby cuteness. Sadly they are often tossed out as if they are inanimate objects of no value and with no feelings: leaving them to fend for themselves on the street seems like a viable option when you live in a country playing host to so many street dogs already.

People are very attached to this native breed, which originated centuries ago in central Turkey – they are a mountain breed with herding capabilities that have traditionally been guardians of flocks as well as families, particularly young children. However, being mixed, this family stands little to no chance of re-homing in their home nation, sadly.

Aysin has worked incredibly hard for a full year to ensure the safety of this family. She has feared for their lives, and spent out of her own pocket, keeping them safely boarded and cared for and fed.








Desperate to find loving homes for this amazing family, who has waited so very long, Aysin came across the International Street Dog Foundation on Facebook. She reached out to ISDF, offering to fly the three puppies to Chicago.

When she tentatively told us (after we asked) that she would probably have to return Anne to the street since no one would want a mother who’d had her ears brutally slashed off, we responded that we would LOVE to help this wonderful mother and sweet girl – really, still a puppy herself – find a home to call her own as well.
Aysin was overcome with joy at this news…and we are so happy to think of the life to come for all four members of this fortunate family. We are so happy that Aysin happened upon Mama Anne on that fateful day one year ago!

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ANNE (mama)





ANNE – the head of this sweet little brood – is a spayed female, one and a half years old, weighing 50 lbs (23 kgs). Aysin describes her as very mellow, shy, sweet, and introverted. She loves attention but is sometimes afraid to ask for it. Hiding has probably paid off for all of her difficult life – look what happened to her poor ears and head when she got someone’s attention, after all!

Aside from her healed injury, Anne is in good health. She doesn’t ask for much but has so much to offer! She has seen a lot of hardship and can be shy around new people, but her trust builds quickly once she knows she is safe. Anne would make an excellent companion with a committed person or family who understands her sweet, shy, lovely nature.

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DIANE (female)






DIANE is the big sister (literally!) weighing in at 59 lbs (27 kgs). She is a mellow girl who absolutely adores people! Diane is generally good with other dogs, although she has a bit of an “alpha” personality and can sometimes feel a little jealous when her brothers are hogging all the attention. Diane may do best in an only dog home, or with another submissive dog. She is the largest, and has the lightest coloring of the three siblings.

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YALIN (male)









YALIN is one of two brothers, weighing in at 52 lbs (24 kgs). He is a very sweet and playful boy, although he has many quiet moments too. He loves to be around people and begs for affection in an endearing way. Yalin does very well with people and other dogs.

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KUTMAN (male)











KUTMAN is the other brother, weighing exactly the same as Yalin – 52 lbs (24 kgs). He the calmest of all three pups, and as sweet as can be. Kutman is the one with the darkest “mask” of his siblings, giving him a handsome, boyish face. Kutman is wonderful with people and other dogs.

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Please contact Dawn by phone at (414) 426-4148 or by email at if you are interested in adopting a member of this darling family. Thank you!