Hilary Swank helps Bucharest stray dogs

Swank visited Bucharest last week and showed a different kind of skill: fighting for animal rights. Swank, who says travel has been her best education, rarely leaves home without Kai, a devoted Jack Russell stray she rescued in Los Angeles. 

In the Romanian capital on Friday, she visited projects set up by the animal welfare foundation Vier Pfoten that encourage interaction between stray dogs and institutionalised people.

Bucharest has 35,000 strays and their fate has sparked a fierce debate here. Swank said, “I believe that it is healing to these kids who don’t trust people anymore. The unconditional love of an animal is very healing and teaches them about not just unconditional love but about a relationship, about responsibility, about anger management.” Swank said she is starting a US charity called Hilaroo to bring needy children and animals together. 

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