CANDi... saving the lives of stray cats and dogs through spay, neuter and adoption programs supported by the tourism industry, travelers and pet lovers.

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The Economic Impact of Stray Cats and Dogs At Tourist Destinations on the Tourism Industry

Mommy Street_DogTwo thirds (66%) of consumers from twenty-six countries say they prefer to buy products and services from companies that have implemented programs to give back to society, including Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs. Reducing the suffering of stray cats and dogs at tourist destinations is a way of giving back to society by improving the health and safety of communities and enhancing the experience of many tourists.

People flock to Caribbean and Mexican tourist destinations to enjoy their vacation, but for many travelers, encountering stray cats and dog who are starving, sick, and suffering, leaves a lasting negative impression on their travel experience, thus influencing future travel spending decisions.

Research indicates that over 4 million U.S. travelers are less likely to travel to Mexico because of concern about stray cats and dogs. This affects the whole of the travel industry including, tour operators, airlines, hotels, and local tourism bureaus that focus on generating positive word-of-mouth and maintaining repeat visits by tourists. Furthermore, many travelers named destinations where they actually refused to travel because of stray cats and dogs. Out of the travelers who indicated they avoided certain vacation spots because they saw homeless animals, Mexico was the most frequently selected country that they would not visit.

When compassionate tourists try to help strays by reporting the problem, their good intentions often lead to bad outcomes. Local governments, without funds for humane solutions, simply round up animals and kill them, by electrocution, drowning, or other painful methods.

What most tourists don’t know is that mass killings go on in numerous popular tourist destination countries before peak tourism seasons begin. These killings are conducted on a regular basis and often involve cruel strategies to kill as many strays as possible for the least amount of resources. In some areas, bounties are placed on strays with tax incentives or cash payments offered, resulting in not only strays being killed but also family pets who are sacrificed for the reward money. These mass killings may even contribute to greater population growth because the remaining animals will have access to greater resources and reproduce faster.

Yet humane solutions do exist, and CANDi is paving the way as the leader in ethical and humane travel by saving the lives of stray animals through tourism. These solutions have economic impacts far beyond just pleasing tourists; the humane management of stray cat and dog populations improves the environment by conserving biodiversity, safeguards the health and safety of tourists and tourist destination community members, protects agricultural concerns, and supports education and awareness that violence against animals leads to violence against people.

With support from the travel industry, CANDi is able to implement its programs, including the Cat Café program, which helps to humanely control the feral cat population on resort grounds.

CANDi International has recently begun a partnership with RIU Hotels and Resorts, an international hotel chain with over one hundred properties worldwide in 16 countries. RIU Hotels and Resorts opened its first Cat Café in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. In recognition of their CSR programs at travel destinations where they have properties, RIU has supported a spay/neuter event in Cancun by donating lodging for veterinarians and other volunteers coming from the U.S., Canada, and other parts of the world. These volunteers completed surgeries for more than 1,500 community animals. RIU has already publicly committed to expand the partnership with CANDi to many other destinations, including Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Cuba.

Several other high profile travel companies have stepped forward to lead initiatives to help communities compassionately care for their strays. Air Transat, Canada’s leading holiday airline, carrying over 3 million passengers to nearly 60 of the world’s top tourist destinations every year, is a leading contributor to the success of CANDi International’s spay/neuter clinics at the resort destination of Cancun, Mexico. Concerned with helping the communities it serves and also aware that stray cats and dogs can affect the holiday experience of their passengers, Air Transat’s support has allowed CANDi to spay or neuter well over 10,000 thousand cats and dogs since their clinics began in 2008.

CANDi International has also partnered with the Association for Canadian Travel Agents (ACTA) to help spread the word to the association’s 14,000S travel professionals about how tourists can help stray animals abroad. ACTA came on board as a direct result of feedback from hundreds of clients.

CANDi's Economic Impact of Strays Report provides solid research on how substantial numbers of tourists are negatively affected by witnessing the suffering of stray animals at tourist destinations. CANDi’s hope is to gain the support of the tourism industry to use their global economic and political clout to make lasting and sustainable changes for stray animals at international tourist destinations.

Dog Photo Mini Sessions to support CANDi
Tuesday, 23 July 2013 19:31

Dog mini sessions for charity!!!

Bring your kids, bring your fiance, heck bring Grandma, but don’t forget your dog!

Pay it forward and have amazing photos with your doggie BFF! 

I will be taking photographs of local dogs to benefit the non-profit organization CANDi International on Sunday,  July 28th  from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m at The Saratoga State Park. Each mini-portrait session is 15 minutes and you  will receive 10 or more  hi-resolution images per sitting. The cost of each photo session is $150 payable directly to CANDi International at  I am donating 100% of the session fee for the entire day to CANDi to help save the lives of street dogs in Mexico. Receipts can be forwarded to Tracey at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it when booking your photo shoot.

This is a way for fortunate dogs to help their less fortunate counterparts in Mexico. My goal with this shoot is two-fold. Firstly, to raise funds for CANDi. Secondly, to bring awareness to the issue of the thousands of stray dogs in and around Cancun, with a potential   gallery show in New York. This is one way your dog can help another dog in a different country.

I would like to display the photographs of pet owners with their dogs at a  gallery show in New York, alongside the portraits of street dogs in Mexico. My  hope is to raise awareness of this growing epidemic by juxtaposing the images of fortunate American dogs and their families side-by-side with Mexican street dogs who have not been as blessed to receive a life of comfort with a loving family.

This is a great way to have your dog help another dog!  You receive a professional portrait package illustrating the bond between you and your special companion, while donating to a worthy cause. The only criteria is that participating families in the photo shoot must have a dog.

There are only 32 sessions available for dog lovers and their pooches. Donations are tax-deductible.

When: Sunday July 28, 2013 from 11-8pm (rain or shine)
Where: Saratoga State Park, the grounds across from the Hall of Springs
Cost: $150. donated directly to CANDi International (tax deductible too)

Sign up for one of the few remaining photo sessions, now!

2nd Annual “Putt for the Pups” to benefit CANDi and local Saratoga animal rescue organization
Tuesday, 19 March 2013 03:37

2nd Annual “Putt for the Pups” to benefit CANDi and local Saratoga animal rescue organization Mark your calendars for June 15th to participate in the 2nd Annual Putt for the Pups golf tournament, which benefits both international and local animal rescue. Hosted at Frear Park in Troy, NY, this tournament will raise both money and awareness for animals in need. Whether you're a pro-golfer or just a pro-dog-lover, come out and join the fun. Ready to register? Click here. (Registration begins April 1.) Why Putt for Pups?

Air Transat, Cvets' Pets, and CFLPA Members team up with CANDi to tackle pet overpopulation
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 14:48

Eight Football Players and Animal Advocates Set to Follow in the Footsteps of Actor/Comedian George Lopez and Support an Animal Welfare Non-Profit Reducing Animal Suffering and Overpopulation in Mexico

They may look like guys you wouldn’t want to mess with when they are on the football field, but eight guys representing five teams from the Canadian Football League (CFL) are showing their softer sides as they gear up to help with the ninth Cats and Dogs International (CANDi) sterilization clinic in Bonfil (an economically-challenged area of Cancun, Mexico) running January 11 – 16, 2013.

Animal-welfare nonprofit sterilizes 1,500 animals at free clinic in Cancun, Mexico
Wednesday, 28 November 2012 22:38

Sponsored by actor/comedian George Lopez and Pryor’s Planet

November 19, 2012 — Cats and Dogs International (CANDi), upon returning from its eighth Cancun, Mexico clinic this week, reports that it has broken its previous record for sterilizing more stray dogs and cats in a five-day period than during any of its previous clinics.

 “This was an extremely successful trip for us, our best yet,” said Darci Galati, CANDi International President and Founder. “With the help of our partners, we helped prevent literally millions of unwanted animals from living on the street and enduring lives of suffering.”

CANDi Partners with RIU for Cancun Clinic
Saturday, 03 November 2012 22:39

Fast-rising animal welfare organization partners with industry leading hotel and resort chain and Hollywood celebs to find humane solutions to a growing problem.

CANDi International is continuing its quick rise, gearing up for its eighth Cancun clinic (from Nov. 5-9) and now partnering with tourism industry heavy-hitter RIU Hotels and Resorts.

 “This is a huge step for us going forward,” said CANDi International President and Founder Darci Galati. “We’ve seen a lot of success already, but our recent partnerships, including with RIU, show that we’re ready to do so much more.”

CANDi International continues its quick growth
Saturday, 06 October 2012 15:10

Fast-rising animal welfare organization works with the tourism industry and Hollywood celebrities to find effective, humane solutions to a growing problem.

In the past few months, CANDi International has made plans for two new clinics in Cancun, Mexico for 2012 and 2013, partnered with some of the world’s largest travel industry leaders and received the support of several U.S. and Canadian companies and celebrities all to help with a cause that many people see, but few do anything about.

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