Kennels in Areeiro

Dear Editor,

As neighbours of the illegal kennels in Areeiro, Merry Legs Pet Centre and Resort (formally known as The Grange), residents within the area were very pleased to see your article (dated July 28 2006) confirming the demolition order served on these premises. The majority of residents in close proximity to this kennel have been petitioning Loulé Câmara for some time, regarding the noise and subsequent stress this kennel causes to the neighbourhood, and can provide copies of petitions submitted with multiple signatures, along with subsequent process numbers allocated by Loulé Câmara regarding this matter.

Residents objected to the kennel facility from day one, knowing that there was no licence granted by the câmara from the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries for the premises to be used as a boarding kennel. However, to discover (from your article) the kennels were built without the correct planning permission, further adds to the total illegality of this operation.

The resultant constant noise from this establishment can only lead to the devaluation of the surrounding properties, which are directly affected by the persistent, uncontrolled noise. Several residents have checked this with estate agents in the area and the amounts quoted in terms of loss of value are not insignificant. A boarding kennel should never be allowed to operate in a residential neighbourhood, and residents are determined to fight this illegal operation. In fact, some years back, a licence was applied for at this location and refused; it is understood a licence was awarded in the rural area of Goldra.

Perhaps dog owners, who have used this facility, will also recognise that it is inappropriately positioned and look to place their dogs in a more traditional, remote, licensed kennel location. It is also assumed there must be issues with insurance. If the kennels are not licensed and legal, then any illness or harm boarded pets experience are unlikely to be covered in the event of any claim.

It is understood from personnel within the câmara that should the demolition order be ignored by the current owners, then they will be committing a criminal offence and the matter will go to court, thereby giving the residents of Areeiro the chance to air their objection to this noisy, stressful operation.

Residents have no objection to the only licence the premises has: a licence for veterinary practice. This licence, when operated properly, allows a small kennel facility for two dogs or three cats for overnight stays, say after an operation or treatment.

Hopefully, our perseverance in opposing this kennel will be rewarded in its closure as a boarding facility.

Any names involved with these petitions have been withheld from this letter as, it is understood, threats have been made to some of the residents in the area.

Areeiro Residents

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