Ukrainian women, hunters and their dogs, under this title the Federation of Doubs Hunters published a touching report in its magazine “ The Comtois Hunter »About welcoming five Ukrainian women to a hunting team on foot: the Loue-Lison rally. The crew dogs make it possible to speak freely, facilitate contacts, approach people and create the first smiles seen.
A test trip, from Kyiv to the barns in Céry…
When on February 24 Russia began the conflict with Ukraine, the whole family decided to organize itself to welcome possible refugees. Many contacts have been made and five Ukrainians will arrive in Besançon on the morning of April 25, their faces marked with the fatigue represented by this real expedition of almost 46 hours and 2300 km covered. The first train was taken down at night, the panic in the stomach and the lights were turned off under the loud alarms of Kyiv’s anti-aircraft defense. Destination Lviv (Leopold) then Poland, Germany and France. Three women and two children therefore left their homeland for immersion unknown. And this anonymity can be significant for town residents who previously lived in large towns. In fact, they don’t know that they come to a family of hunters where dogs are the center of their daily worries and that the way they hunt is more than a passion: a real one. way of life. !
Hunting dogs free to speak and heal the wounds of the soul …
At the entrance gate is the motto of the crew: “ With them and for them »… Like a welcome message that says a lot about the values of this house. Almost all the luggage is placed in different rooms and despite the fatigue, children and the elderly want to see the dogs. This time is unique for everyone. Tell us Hervé “ Since then, the ice has broken. Ukrainians forget for a moment their stress, their fatigue, their grief and their sorrows, all busy stroking the dogs, kissing and cuddling the puppies, amazed to see- look at the package. Surprised and overwhelmed, they asked a thousand questions on this topic: Do they have a name? Why so many dogs? What are they for? Do they live with you? ”
Ukrainians and Venerie… without prejudice!
Finally, and against all expectations, hunting plays an important part of this welcoming process. The last of the hunting season has just ended, nature outings with dogs allow crews to explain to their new friends the principles of hare hunting. The latter, attracted by the costume of the crew, expressed themselves admiring the pageantry surrounding this practice, believing that it reflected their image of France and its history. City dwellers ignorant at all about hunting, Ukrainians in Céry show not the first about hunting or hunting in general. Able to have a tolerance and a long view that many of our fellow citizens are no longer in hunting practices, they wholeheartedly embrace this particular and unique context in their eyes.
Nice adventure …
Finally, this beautiful human adventure and also a unique hunting adventure, the dogs of Vénerie form a real bridge between people who don’t have to be together; both are a topic of conversation among others but also a parenthesis of tenderness and affection. The Loue-Lison rally initiative shows that hunters are women and men too rich in human values and capable of compassion and empathy, far from the clichés marked by our opponents!
“We were forced to leave our homes, our homeland to bring the children safely. We can’t walk with kids on the street, the sirens sound several times a day. So we arrived at the Château de Cery. We are very grateful for the way we were received. With all my heart and with all my soul, we didn’t know how to express our gratitude! The kids were especially happy here with the 50 dogs we discovered! Our girls love dogs and the greatest joy for them is feeding, stroking, playing with puppies. Not a day goes by that we don’t hug or kiss them! They are the most beautiful, smartest and kindest dogs in the world! We seem to be in a fairy tale, in the “branch of paradise” on earth. For the first time in two months of the war we could sleep normally, safely and see the smiles and joy of our children! Enjoy the beauty of the surroundings and feel at peace! We are so grateful to this family for the warm welcome and all they have done for us. ”
Text and Photo: Hervé Cart