Constantia couple Robert and Melanie Durrheim, and Roger a small white Maltese-terrier cross. Picture: Supplied
Constantia couple Robert and Melanie Durrheim, and Roger a small white Maltese-terrier cross. Picture: Supplied

Roger went from being tied up at taxi rank to being fought over in court and eventually flown across the world

By Chelsea Geach Time of article published Jul 11, 2020

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Cape Town - From being tied up at a taxi rank to being fought over in court and flown across the world: Roger the rescue dog has gone from being abandoned to winning the hearts of two different families on two continents.

Roger, a small white Maltese-terrier cross, has been the centre of a legal battle between two families with the animal homing organisation Oscar’s Arc (OA) in the middle.

OA director Joanne Lefson said UK tourists saw Roger at an adoption day at the V&A Waterfront.

“They fell in love with this dog called Roger and they formed a beautiful bond. We approved the adoption,” Lefson said. “Along came Covid and everybody had to shut down. We put all our dogs into foster homes.”

Constantia couple Robert and Melanie Durrheim already had an adopted dog from OA, and volunteered to foster Roger for the lockdown.

As the lockdown wore on, it became clear to the couple that he would be happier with them than being put in a crate and sent overseas.

Lefson said that Melanie lied about Roger’s behaviour in order to manipulate the adoption and keep the dog.

“When the time came where we were ready to fly Roger to the UK, Melanie didn’t want to surrender the dog,” Lefson said.

On Friday, the Durrheims to handed Roger over to OA, in order to honour the contract with the original adopter. While they were heartbroken to let him go, Lefson said they have decided to foster another dog in his place.

Weekend Argus

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