Algarve animal protectors unite to help threatened shelter pay municipal fine

Algarve animal protectors have come together to help threatened Loulé shelter Benafim Dogs pay a €3,600 municipal fine.

The level of shock and disgust over what has happened to the little shelter that does such important work is such that letters have already gone out to Loulé Mayor Vítor Aleixo – their contents splashed over social media (click here), as charities, shelters and individuals put heads together on how best to help.

The fine has to be paid by January 8 – and Benafim Dogs do not have that kind of cash in the kitty.

“This is all so unfair”, campaigner Wendy Frost told the Resident. “Benafim Dogs have been made to close their doors on the many dogs needing help, and to add insult to injury they have a fine and legal costs which they cannot afford.

“We can’t let this happen. They spend so much on the dogs in their care”.

The appeal is due to start raising funds via the ‘Make a bid…Make a difference’ Facebook page tomorrow January 1.

It has an email address (for PAYPAL bids) [email protected] – and for anyone thinking to donate via bank transfer, the details are: BPI BANK, PT50 0010 0000 5835 1650 0018 5 with the request that any donations are clearly marked BENAFIM DOGS.

The letter informing Benafim Dogs of its fine was received on Tuesday late afternoon – coming ‘out of the blue’ in the middle of what are normally ‘holidays’.

Volunteers are still frantically trying to work out their options – but the clock is ticking. If the fine isn’t paid, the Câmara’s letter says the matter will be passed to the Customs Authority for ‘execution’ (meaning property seizure if no funds are available).

This is an issue unlikely to ‘go quietly’: Benafim Dogs is the second shelter to be threatened by Loulé Câmara, with alternatives, say campaigners, “too dismal to contemplate”. Said one, the Câmara’s idea of a municipal kennel is a concrete space where animals ‘go in to die’.

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