Pack of dogs

Animal corner – Social niceties: are your animals behaving?

If we were an animal, what would we choose to be? There would be a lot of “fluffies”, perhaps some “smoothies” and a lot of in-between “crinklies” and “curlies”. Slithering or creeping? Brrrr.

The Association for Protection of Animals Algarve (APAA) and other associations whose business is to care for abandoned animals, in one shape or another, know only too well that there is a problem, especially when it comes to animals who are labelled as ‘wild’ or ‘feral’.

Both have different connotations. Feral describes an animal which was once domesticated and then becomes disowned. Wild, as it implies, is a creature reared from its birth in the wild, or natural habitat. However, their behaviour gets blurred somewhere – wild and feral become synonymous with nuisance.

APAA president Jenny Clarke knows only too well. “Yes, from a balmy blissful evening to a cacophony of tractors, dogs barking and vehicles whizzing around the next day!” Living in the countryside, in the city or a busy town all need consideration.

The quiet countryside

Most of the country people, north or south of ‘whereverland’, know the best one can do is to try the area out for more than a few days of idyllic peace and quiet. Out of season is taking a chance.

The attitude of rearing animals in a foreign country may not be the one that you are used to. But it is part and parcel of “moving” and leaving what was once good old wherever and start a new way of life. Giving it thought and trying it out beforehand is a good idea.

“There are laws for the behavioural issue of animals, and some are not adhered to as strictly as they should,” Jenny agrees that the law is not always the ‘ass’, but sometimes the guilty party is inevitably the owner. Check out your animals’ behaviour. Also look at the laws and by-laws for your area.

Owners of a collection of animals, on the loose, playing in their free time, should make sure their animals are behaving within the guidelines, respecting the community at large.

July 9 was a good date for Jenny and her ARA friend, João Ferreira, who is general manager of Animal Rescue Algarve’s shelter ‘Cabanita’, outside of Loulé. They both made a visit to Kiss Radio Station to talk to Sir Owen Gee about ‘Legacy for Pets’. If, for any reason, you are concerned about abandoning your pet(s) either through illness, or untimely death, contact [email protected] for information. This new and innovative idea in the Algarve is the brainchild of Sid Richardson, founder of ARA. APAA’s Jenny and colleague Anita have already signed up. Really worth considering.