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This is what our adopters say about us!



Hi! I am Josien, 39 years old and mother of 3 children. I came into contact with Lisanne from Melez Dog Rescue (formerly: In Safe Hands) in 2021 because a friend pointed it out to me. After a few years without a dog, I really missed the company. I consciously did not want a puppy anymore and there was no dog in the Dutch animal shelters that suited our family. Our eyes then fell on Cookie and we were immediately sold! Very cute to see. But of course appearance is not what matters. I then talked to Lisanne to find out whether Cookie would suit our family. Was Cookie good with children? How would Cookie and our cat get along? Has she experienced any trauma? All my questions were answered in all honesty, no "sales talk". I was sent all kinds of photos and videos of Cookie so that I could get a good idea of her. The communication is clear and complete, which is great!


We decided to take the step, what a nice feeling it gives, knowing that you can offer such a dog a safe home! Because there were few flights due to corona, we had to wait a while for her, but it still went quite quickly. Before leaving Turkey, Cookie was checked by a vet, she was sterilized, vaccinated, dewormed and deflead. She has been tested for all kinds of diseases. So you know that the dog has been declared healthy, and you will receive all the papers. Cookie flew to Germany with Phoenix with a flight volunteer (they are so important in this whole process!). She stayed with a foster volunteer there for a few days until we picked her up near the German-Dutch border. We live in Zeeland ourselves, so it was quite a road trip for Cookie. When we got home Cookie was exhausted and fell asleep straight away.


What I found so special is that she immediately felt so comfortable that she started sleeping on her back. Things went well with the children right away, which was great! Cookie is a very gentle dog, with, at times, a lot of energy. She has a lot of love to give, I always think you can tell from her that she is grateful to have been saved. She radiates that somehow. Cookie settled in well with us. Things are going fantastically well in and around the house. Things are generally going well on the street, but she still finds it intimidating during the tourist summer period that we have here in Zeeland. Then we really have to look for quiet places to let her enjoy her walk. For example, she finds cycling scary, and scooters/mopeds that make a lot of noise. She is also afraid of fireworks and thunder, but with peace and love everything will be fine. The first year that a rescue dog is with you is a year full of firsts. You have to get to know your dog and teach your dog to trust you. That takes time. If you can give your dog the time, patience and love, you will have a buddy for life.


When Cookie had been with us for a year, my mother became ill and was unable to care for her dog for a while. Harry came to our house temporarily and I saw that Cookie felt more confident with a stable dog next to him. When Harry returned to his house I saw that Cookie took another step back in her self-confidence. That made me decide to contact Lisanne again to see if there was a suitable dog that would suit our family. Our eye fell on beautiful Fia. Lisanne went to check whether Fia was good with children and cats, and everything went great! But then the question arose whether I could temporarily take Kaysie into my home. Kaysie was in a foster family waiting for her forever home, but her foster family went on vacation. Of course she was allowed to come, we in the car to Maastricht to pick up Kaysie. What a huge treasure she is! And what power she has with Cookie! Kaysie was one of Patty's (now Charly's) puppies, born in the shelter in Turkey. So fortunately she did not experience the real suffering of the street. That makes her a stable dog, which Cookie needed. Kaysie has now been with us for a year and the two are still doing very well together. You see Cookie pulling herself up to Kaysie. She feels more confident. They play great fun together. I am so grateful that these 2 dogs came our way, how they have enriched our lives.


There are already enough dogs in the world, so I think "adopt don't shop" is a nice saying. You can give a rescue dog the chance for a fantastic life full of love here, instead of a life on the street full of fear and uncertainty.


The guidance from the Foundation is super nice. If you have any questions or encounter any problems, you can always contact them. We have a Whatsapp group that includes a lot of adopters from the Netherlands and Belgium, where we regularly ask each other for tips. I find that very valuable, the group contains a lot of experience. Of course, every dog is different and has different needs, but by hearing different experiences you can figure out what you think is good for your dog.

For me there is no other dog than a rescue dog!


Hi everybody!
I am the proud owner of Ziyah.
In July 2023, I went to Turkey to pick up Ziyah myself. After several conversations with the team at
Melez Dog Rescue about all the dogs in the shelter, they showed me Ziyah as the best match for
what I was looking for. And that turned out to be so true! Ziyah and I are already best friends for life.
I wanted a dog that I could easily take with me everywhere, and that is certainly possible with Ziyah.
I work in senior care with many elderly people who already have dementia. Since the second week
that Ziyah was in the Netherlands, he has been coming with me to work and he loves it there. The
clients all love him too and he puts a big smile on everyone's face every time. It is very nice to see
how Ziyah has such a positive influence on the seniors. Ziyah is already completely settled here
and I can't imagine life without him. On holiday with the caravan, on the bike in his bicycle basket,
he enjoys everything immensely!
But to get back to the beginning, I went to pick up Ziyah in Turkey myself and spent 3 days at the
shelter. And what a great job Lisanne does there! Taking care of so many dogs that need care and
attention every day is no small feat. I spent the days I was there cuddling lots of dogs and taking them for one-on-one walks. And what sweethearts they all are, I would love to take them all home with me :)
I recommend everyone to adopt a dog here! Michelle and Lisanne will look at exactly what suits you and I am sure there will be a perfect match for everyone. There are so many different types of dogs and they were all very sweet. And besides, it gives a great feeling to adopt such a dog. So “adopt don't shop”!!!
Love Danielle and 🐾 from Ziyah



Our Don came to live with us more than 3 years ago.


I came into contact with Lisanne through an old colleague because my partner and I were interested in adopting a dog.

When Lisanne sent us photos of Don with a description of his character, we immediately fell in love. It just took a while before he could come to the Netherlands because we were in the middle of Corona time.


After a long wait the time had finally come, we were allowed to pick Don up from the airport.

He found it very exciting at the airport and in the car, but when we got home he quickly loosened up.

In the beginning, Don found everything very exciting, especially visitors. Fortunately, that has now completely changed and he is a very sweet dog who loves attention and cuddling.

Don recently became our daughter's big brother.

Every day we are extremely grateful that Don came into our lives. We also sometimes say to each other that Don chose us instead of... we him.


We hope to enjoy Don for a long time to come♥️


Love, Jordy and Daisy

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A Testimonial for Melez Dog Rescue: The Joy of Adopting Whisky


When my husband Willem and I began our search for a rescue dog in the Netherlands, we stumbled upon an Instagram page that stopped us in our tracks. Melez Dog Rescue (formerly called: In Safe Hands), dedicated to celebrating the unique and often overlooked mutts of Turkey, introduced us to Sandy, now lovingly renamed Whisky.


A year-old pooch with a history of abandonment and a head wound, Whisky was not your conventional Instagram sensation. Yet her spirit captivated us. With her adorable antics, such as climbing atop the little dog houses at the shelter, she won our hearts.


The decision was easy. Our previous life experiences, including relief work in South Sudan where Willem was "Whisky Alpha" and I was "Whisky Echo," made us confident that Whisky was the right name for her. Together, we became the 'Three Whiskies.'


Whisky is not just another pet; she's a character. We’ve given her a slew of pet names – from 'bikkeliebooboo' to 'happycow,' each capturing a facet of her multifaceted personality. She’s taught us patience, especially when she’s wary of visitors or excitedly pulling on her leash during walks. But time, training, and her favorite treats have transformed her into a well-behaved bundle of joy who loves stick-biting escapades in the forest across our home. She's an outdoor enthusiast who relishes racing against other dogs, often proving her speed—or cheekily tugging at their tails when she can't outpace them. However, don't be fooled—Whisky's enthusiasm for the great outdoors wanes dramatically when rain is involved, during which she much prefers the cozy comforts of home.


Melez Dog Rescue, thank you for bringing Whisky into our lives. You are not merely rescuing dogs; you are creating families. We can't fathom a life without Whisky now, and even our parents-in-law have become ardent fans during her holiday stays.


If you’re looking to save a life and gain an irreplaceable family member, consider adopting a 'melez.' We did, and we couldn't be happier.


                                                                       We saw Nessa pop up on the Instagram page on July 24, '22. Nessa was taken from the                                                                                           government shelter by Lisanne, as her chances of survival there were very small. After some   with                                                                         Lisanne, it turned out that she still needed some time to receive the necessary medical care and                                                                             follow-up.
                                                                       We kept in touch with Lisanne and after a home visit by one of the rescue's volunteers, Nessa flew                                                                         from Turkey to Amsterdam on January 8, where we were waiting for them.
                                                                       Nessa was initially scared, but within a few weeks she blossomed completely and now she is an                                                                             incredibly sweet dog with a lot of energy, which sometimes entails the necessary zoomies.

                                                                       From the moment Nessa felt completely at home, we sent Lisanne again to ask if she might have a                                                                         nice boyfriend for Nessa, then 10-month-old Alvin came on our radar. After some messages back                                                                             and forth, Alvin arrived at Zaventem airport on July 8, '23. When we got home it took some getting                                                                         used to our new arrival, but everything also went smoothly for Alvin & he was potty trained very                                                                               quickly. Alvin also has a lot of energy & the daily zoomies will now be carried out together with                                                                                 Nessa!

                                                                       We are very satisfied with the adoption process, Lisanne only wants the best for all her dogs and                                                                             this is evident in every step in this process, from the first message to the follow-up afterwards,                                                                                  which is done by Michelle. Thank you Lisanne & team for making this all possible, Nessa & Alvin are very grateful to you & so are we.

Emily x Ivan

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