A former British cab driver turned Zoologist has helped change the face of animal rescue in Tangier, Morocco. Karl Scarr, 54, hails from Cambridge, England. After years of driving taxis, Scarr decided to pursue a degree in Zoology at the University of Cambridge. In 2012 he visited Morocco, and his life took a drastic turn.
Observing the stark reality of life on the streets for abandoned dogs and other animals in Tangier convinced Scarr he needed to take action. The millionaire invested his entire savings into opening a sanctuary. Named Le Sanctuaire de la Faune de Tanger (The Wild Animal Sanctuary of Tangier,) Karl has single-handedly helped over one thousand dogs, cats, and other animals.
Scarr’s sanctuary provides not only a home for these animals, but also medical help and relocation for sick, neglected, abused, and wild animals. Karl also works with the community in Tangier to better educate and raise awareness on animal welfare.
What’s even more astonishing, Scarr lived in a kennel at his sanctuary, along with two hundred dogs! He lived there while his home nearby was being built. He said it was difficult, as there was minimal space and the dogs were often unpredictable. Since all of the dogs were victims of atrocities such as neglect, abandonment, torture, and malnourishment, the unpredictability was understandable.
Most of the dogs were suffering from fleas, worms, and more serious diseases as they lived with Scarr. He treated and cared for them, all while living with them, for four years. In addition to already harsh living conditions, there was no electricity or running water at his center.
Karl’s hope with building the sanctuary was to not only care for and find homes for the dogs and other animals but to change the animal protection laws in Morocco. Scarr also said he was planning on opening a second sanctuary in Marbella, Spain.
Photo credits: SWNS – South West News Service