Torrevieja’s animal shelter (Albergue Municipal de Animales) is urgently
seeking homes and volunteers to help lost and abandoned cats. There are
dozens of beautiful domestic cats and kittens in the shelter waiting for
adoption but not enough people are coming forward to adopt them.
‘We do everything we can to care for the cats and kittens,’ says Councillor
Carmen Morate, ‘but shelter life can be distressing for them so we really do
need more people to come forward and adopt now.’
Most of the adult cats were pets but because of different circumstances they
have ended up in the shelter. Many crave human attention and anyone taking
them home would be rewarded with an affectionate pet. Alongside the adult
cats there are many kittens that are desperate for a home. They are young
and will bond very quickly with a new family.
People are usually aware that the shelter takes in dogs but may be less aware
that it’s also the home to a number of abandoned cats. This may be
contributing to the lack of adoptions and it is hoped that word can be spread
that homes for cats are desperately needed too.
It’s not only homes that are needed. The shelter also urgently requires
volunteers to help care for the cats whilst they are waiting. They need
volunteers to clean the cat area and feed them. They also need someone to
spend time with them, keeping them socialised and ensuring that they are
ready for adoption when the right person comes around.
If you think you can help out, either by adopting or volunteering, then please
visit the shelter between 10am and 2pm from Monday to Friday or between
9am and 1pm on Saturdays and Sundays. The Albergue (shelter) is in
Avenida Los Nénufares, which is just off the CV905 close to the Habaneras
commercial centre. It is now signed posted, Albergue, from the slip road just
before the local police station.
Further information and details of lost and abandoned animals can also be
found on the Facebook site Concejalia de Proteccion Animal de Torrevieja.
Guardia Civil traffic officers rescued an injured owl on the motorway in Elche. The rescue took
place early on Thursday morning on the A-7 when a member of the public reported seeing a
potentially injured owl on the motorway. A nearby traffic patrol made its way to the area and
managed to rescue the animal which had suffered a broken wing, presumably due to being hit
by a vehicle. Officers rescued the eagle owl and handed it over to Seprona, the environmental
wing of the Guardia Civil, where it was later transferred to a special recovery centre in Santa
The eagle owl is a species in danger of extinction and of a high ecological value. It is hoped that
once the animal has recovered from the injury at the Santa Faz Species Recovery Center it will
be returned to its natural habitat if they deem appropriate. According to statistics from
previous years, three quarters of the animals that are brought this centre are released at a
On the 30 th September it will be your chance to take a look at the animals
currently housed in Torrevieja’s animal shelter. The shelter is constantly in
demand for animals abandoned or dumped by their owners or found to have
been abused and in need of a new home. The open day will run from 11am to
Although those running the shelter do their very best to ensure that the
animals are as comfortable as possible, this is not a home. Volunteers walk
the dogs but for many of these animals who have been used to being the
family pet, the stay in the shelter is a traumatic one.
The Albergue’s aim is to match dogs and cats as quickly as possible with a
potential home. Councillor Carmen Morate is responsible for the shelter. ‘It’s
been a long hard summer for the abandoned animals,’ she explained. ‘And
there’s been a lot of work to do for the volunteers who have been trying to find
homes for them all.’
The shelter is located on calle Nenúfares and the shelter or Albergue is at the
end. Those coming to the open day will have chance to look around and see
the dogs and cats who are hoping to be homed. There will also be a workshop
for children and adults, an information table about volunteering at the shelter
and also about the association that supports the animals there; ‘Asociación
Animalista de Torrevieja’.
‘At the moment we have 35 dogs,’ says Councillor Morate. ‘They will be out
on parade on this day. There will also be a stand with vegan food and those
who come can also see the cattery where there are 30 cats who are waiting
If you are not able to attend on the day but are interested in adopting a dog or
a cat then you can also visit the ‘Asociación Animalista de Torrevieja’
Facebook page where new arrivals are posted and people are kept informed
about those needing adoption.
Local animal rescue charity APAH has asked us to help highlight the
enormous problem that APAH and other animal charities are facing given
the deluge of abandoned kittens. Litters of kittens are being dumped at the
Cattery, on the doorstep of the Charity Shop and even brought into the
shop in boxes and just left for volunteers to find.
The latest incident was last Tuesday when someone put a Supermarket
shopping basket containing five, four week old kittens over the Cattery
fence. They were terrified, dehydrated, starving and their fur had been
burnt by contact with a caustic substance.
The local animal charities are overwhelmed with the number of kittens that
are being dumped. No-one stops to consider the implications, both
financial and practical of expecting charities to keep on finding the space
and the money to care for litter after litter of kittens.
There is never an attempt made to donate money towards the cost of
caring for the kittens. The food bill and veterinary care alone is a severe
strain on charities, which already have a Cattery full of cats to care for.
An APAH spokesperson said: “There is simply not enough money, space or
volunteers to deal with the problem, but the kittens just keep on coming.
If a charity was to turn away kittens, or have them put to sleep, the
backlash from members of the public would be enormous, and yet people
think that it's perfectly acceptable to dump them, that charities the have
limitless space and money to keep taking them in.
“One of the commonest terms used is 'it's only one', and surely you have
room for one more. When you have taken twenty or more calls in a day,
that 'one more' becomes twenty or thirty. Four calls taken in a day with
litters ranging from four to eight, can mean sixteen to thirty two kittens, and
that's in an average day.”
No charity wants to have to refuse help, but with the best will in the World,
full has to be full. You cannot just keep squeezing more and more cats and
kittens into a space and expect it to be okay. The cats already in the
charity’s care begin to suffer, and that cannot be allowed to happen. So
unfortunately, people's request for help is sadly refused. Unfortunately, the
next step is often to dump the kittens somewhere and just walk away.
Adult cats both domestic and feral have to be neutered. According to the
charities this is the only way this escalating problem is going to stop. Cat
owners themselves are responsible for the level of breeding that goes on
and responsible owners will do the right thing, but unfortunately some do
not. It is not easy to control the level of feral cats, but many charities are
willing to work with communities to try to keep the numbers down by
helping trap feral adult cats. If members of communities work together to
collect the money needed, charities would be able to help them keep the
cat population down.
Finca San Miguel de Salinas is looking for a kind-hearted person to offer a ‘forever home’ to
a recently orphaned young dog called Zara.
Zara and her mother Rita were rescued by Finca volunteers after reports that they were
malnourished and living on a chain. Both had marks from the chain embedded in their skin
and were very shy. Luckily, after a few days they were happier and eating from the hands of
the volunteers, allowing themselves to be petted and going for walks. However, Rita took a
turn for the worse and despite picking up for a while and the efforts of the vet passed away.
Zara is now an orphan and needs a loving home. She is just 2 years old, is a quick learner
with a wonderful temperament. If you think you might have a home for Zara and would like
to meet her, please can call Mona on 616792355.
Finca San Miguel de Salinas, founded by Mona Nowak, is an animal sanctuary which
currently cares for 8 horses, 4 ponies, 6 goats, 2 dogs, 13 geese, chickens, 4 pigs, circa 20
feral cats and is supported by the charity Happy Animals Orihuela.
To raise money for the animals, the Finca hosts an open day on the last Saturday of every
month between 5.30pm and 9.30pm. The next one will be held on 26 th September and
Mona and Sol will be raising money through a Bikini Ice Bucket Challenge and are looking for
sponsors. All sponsors will also receive a raffle ticket for the chance to win a Serrano
Ham…and the highest sponsor gets to throw the bucket of water.
Sponsor forms can be collected from Cheers Bar/Restaurant, Eagles Nest and Wolfies Bar,
Blue Lagoon. Donations can also e made to: IBAN 80 0075 1055 4806 0035 0496 or through
the PayPal account: firstname.lastname@example.org
More information on any of the above and directions to the Finca see the Facebook page:
fincasanmigueldesalinas. Alternatively, you can call Mona on 616792355 or email Sol on:
Wild animals rescued in Torrevieja
Much publicity is given to the rescue of dogs and cats in Torrevieja but what about pythons? This is just one example of a wild animal that has had to be rescued by the town hall during 2016. Altogether there have been 32 different types of wild animals that have had to be caught and reintroduced to their actual habitats.
Other examples of rescued animals include a number of reptiles, seagulls, owls, bats, kestrels, snakes and eagles. All of these ‘wild’ animals have been rescued in urban areas and many of them are in fact protected species. The total number was announced on Friday 24th February by councillor Fanny Serrano. The number of 32 is, in fact, five more than had been saved the previous year.
The python was perhaps the most unusual of the animals to be rescued and it is likely that it had previously been a pet that was then abandoned. An eagle was also one of the more unusual animals to find their way to the Wildlife Recovery Centre of the Environment Department.
The exact number and breakdown of the rescued animals can be seen on Torrevieja’s website torrevieja.es and includes:
One exotic snake – a python
Two mammals – a dormouse and a bat
24 birds including a hawk eagle, a young owl, a common quail, ten Audouin seagulls, two yellow-legged gulls, two more gulls, a kestrel, three common swifts, a pale swift and a common cormorant
two swarms of domestic bees
In the case of the python, people living in la calle Hierro close to IES Mediterráneo alerted the Guardia Civil that the reptile was approaching down the road. This particular reptile is not native to the Mediterranean climate and cannot withstand the low temperatures at night. It is usually only found in a domestic context in Spain.
Seagulls feature heavily in the list of rescued animals. An Audouin gull was found with a hook in its beak during a routine ringing of some of the birds near the salt works. The bird had to be transferred to the Wildlife Recovery Centre.
Another example was a common kestrel nest with four chicks which was found on the ninth floor balcony of the Hotel Playas. An expert was able to help hotel staff to move the nest to a terrace on the building from where the parents could resume their care of the chicks.
It’s not always the experts that do the rescuing. A resident of Aguas Nuevas rescued a bat and the town hall would like to remind people that if they do find any injured specimen outside their natural space that they can contact the local police on 092 or contact the zoological centre on 670 027 853 or, if it is a marine animals, they can call 112.