Skip To Content
  • Yes! badge
  • Olympics badge

Sochi's Condemned Stray Dogs Are Being Saved By A Russian Billionaire

Oleg Deripaska, one of Russia's richest men, has built a shelter above Sochi.

Deripaska was upset that thousands of strays were being put down by authorities after a pest control company was handed a contract.

Denis Balibouse / Reuters

So he took it upon himself to build these dog shelters in Baranovka near Sochi.

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

He told the BBC: "My first dog I found in the street of my village, the tiny village [where I grew up]."

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

"It was a very close friend for five years."

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

Stray dogs had been attracted to Sochi by the huge number of construction workers there.

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

After one interfered with rehearsals for the opening ceremony and another bit a child, an extermination company was called in.

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

The company's director described the dogs as "biological trash", and there was outrage.

There were estimates that up to 7,000 dogs were killed using poison and traps.

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

Deripaska is the boss of the biggest aluminium company in the world.

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

So far he's managed to save 140 dogs, and a number have been successfully rehomed.

Ints Kalnins / Reuters

UK readers might also remember him from 2008, when he was involved in the “yachtgate” scandal with Lord Mandelson and the then-shadow chancellor George Osborne.

BuzzFeed Daily

Keep up with the latest daily buzz with the BuzzFeed Daily newsletter!

Newsletter signup form