What’s been happening in August?

A quieter month

August was a much quieter month overall than July – it’s always nice to be able to stop and catch our breath! Nine dogs went to their new homes in Belgium and Portugal and we only (haha!) had nine new arrivals. Of course, we also had the routine stuff – 10 dogs were sterilised, 14 were vaccinated.

A new life for old dogs

Two of our new arrivals in August were old dogs showing signs of either life on a chain or abandonment because of their age or ill health. It seems to have been a bit of a theme for this year – so far, we’ve had 8 senior dogs arrive at the shelter, most of them in the last few weeks. Arrival at the shelter can be challenging for them, they have to learn to be sociable with other dogs and, despite the signs of neglect they show, they miss the humans they have known for their whole lives but who abandon them when they are no longer useful. But we are finding that they settle well and actually can thrive at the shelter – they get more attention and love than they may have ever received before, they have company, plenty of food and any medical treatment they need. And of course, they are not on a chain!

Here are just a few of our newest senior dogs. All of them are 12-15 years old.

Skunky was found on the side of the road, with chain still attached to his collar. He is blind, deaf and had a huge tumour, which has been removed.

Bruno was abandoned in the local village in a pretty poor state – very skinny and with little muscle in his hind legs. He has thrived at the shelter and he and his kennel mate, Tom, are best friends. They each have their own igloo to sleep in but they prefer to share!

Inês was also abandoned in a local village. She had scabies and we confirmed in August that she is blind. She has also known hunger and has a little growl if another dog gets too close to her food.

Afonso was found on the streets, deaf and hungry. He has physical signs of a long time spent on a chain – marks around his neck where the collar rubs and fly strike on his ears. He also has prostrate problems but is receiving medication now.

We do the best we can for all our dogs and have no doubt that the life our senior dogs have with us is better than the life they knew before. But it will never be as good as life in a proper home, especially with winter coming. All our senior dogs, and those with health problems, can be ‘forever fostered’ which means that we will continue to cover their medical costs if you use our vet, or waive the adoption fee if you can’t. If you are interested in offering a home to one of these dogs, please visit the ‘Forever Foster’ section of our website here.

Register your microchips!!

In August we were able to reunite three lost dogs with their owners, thanks to registered microchips. They are the only registered microchips Natasha has seen in 8 years of working at the shelter! Most of the dogs we receive at the shelter have no microchip at all, but occasionally we find one that is unregistered.

It is a legal requirement to microchip dogs in Portugal but it is useless unless the chip is then registered. Speak to your vet to find out how to register!

Farewell Ramon

You may remember that back in December our wonderful Ramon went to Dierenthuis, a wonderful facility in the Netherlands which offers a home to dogs from other shelters who are unlikely to be adopted. He spent a wonderful, stress free, few months there but sadly we heard from them in August that Ramon had died. We are forever grateful to Dierenthuis for offering him such a fantastic last few months.

Ramon looking relaxed at Dierenthuis