January 29, 2020

Indara survived a shopping centre

Indara lived in and around a shopping centre. Every time somebody tried to 
touch her, she walked away. She didn't trust anybody. She was kicked and abused so often. She came from a hunter who had dumped her because she was too old. She had to survive, she wanted to survive. She held on to life, in every way.

Many people knew her and offered some food every once in a while, but Indara was often hungry and she did her rounds among the garbage bins. She got pregnant over and over again and many of her little ones came into this world to die - of starvation or they were hit by a car and died and some were taken away for children who wanted a puppy.

In the end, she was caught with a special cage, together with her last litter. These puppies don't have to starve of hunger and they will not be hit by a car, and they will not be gifts for a few days. Indara feels instinctively that we fight for her and her offspring here. She is no longer scared but a thankful and quiet mama. Happy to be saved, no longer to be chased after, happy that she has found a new path. A path that will lead her to a family that will love her and take care of her...
For more information about sweet Indara, please click on her name.


FLAIR Magazine is looking for readers who adopted their pets from a shelter ...

Flair is looking for rescue stories - for example did you choose a dog who had been in a shelter for years. A dog no one else wanted? Or a cat?

If you have a rescue pet you can put him or her - and SHIN - in the spotlight by sending an email to Flair!

Put your rescue dog (and also SHIN) in the spotlight and send an email to sandie.stroobants@flair.be.

"Did you adopt an adult cat from the shelter instead of opting for a kitten or did you take a dog home that had been in an animal shelter for many years? If so we would like to put your story in the spotlight on our website.

Our shelters are overcrowded, but many people who want to adopt an animal take home a kitten or a puppy. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that, but a lot of dogs and cats are waiting in animal shelters for a golden basket. Did you perhaps adopt a slightly older cat even though you knew she no longer had a long life to live or were you determined to give that one dog who has lived in the shelter for years a second chance?

Or maybe there is another beautiful story or special reason behind your adoption story? Send an email with a short description of your story and a photo of you and your pet to sandie.stroobants@flair.be. Who knows your story could soon be on Flair.

January 25, 2020


Please! Why not me?

Why do some dogs find their forever homes so quickly, and others don't? Why do some sweet souls remain, seeing their friends, siblings, mums, companions get chosen, and yet they stay with us. How must it feel when your friend is taken from the cage he or she has shared with you and gets washed and brushed and put in the big cage by the gate. The cage that means 'I'm going home. And then the van, the journey, the airport, the plane ... and finally home! Forever!

Of course those that stay behind know nothing of the journey, though they know their companion is no longer beside them in the cage. When they run through the Refugio to go up to the big field they will pass the big cage by the gate. And see their friend. Probably for the last time.

Why do some get chosen? Sometimes it's obvious - the pretty puppies for instance. But not all puppies in a litter get chosen. Often one or two remain. Sometimes for a long time, getting bigger, becoming dogs, no longer a cuddly puppy so with less chance of being chosen.

They all have had difficult lives, traumas and sad stories to tell. When we know their history, that can make a difference. When generous adopters know how a dog has suffered it will tug at their hearts. And rightly so. But we don't always know the story, the history, what an individual dog has had to go through. Though there's no doubt they will have suffered. But they can't speak so we can't tell their story.

At ACE we take in every sort of dog, in every condition. They all deserve a chance, every single one of them. Old dogs, young dogs, little and big dogs. Healthy and sick. Blind and lame. Deaf and damaged. We take them all. And many of them find forever homes.

The ones I worry about are the 'ordinary' ones. The gentle sweeties who don't stand out. They are not specially handsome. They are not cute. They may have a slightly funny shape, or short little legs. Or just simply not be noticeable. Just ordinary. Just beautiful in their own way.  So here are some of them. We call them the 'long stayers'.

For more information on all these dogs, please click on their names.

This beautiful Podenco boy has been with us for five years. He's already seven. He badly needs a home of his own. We think he's waited long enough, the sweet patient boy.

Sweet Jolie is in foster care in Belgium where you can visit her. She's been with ACE since she was a tiny puppy, all her five and a half years. Isn't it time her home was forever?

A special character, Dominique just needs a patient owner and to be loved. She was found on the streets six years ago when not much more than a puppy. She's in foster care in Belgium.


Adorable Rio. This gentle, affectionate fatty survived a terrible attack, thanks to our vet who found him. With us for five years he now needs a loving owner who will help him get his figure back!

Lala is six and has been with us for nearly five years. Currently in foster care in Belgium, this pretty Pero de Agua is six and is longing for the day she will be in her forever home. 

Scooby has also been with us for nearly five years, Most of his six and a half years. He's just the sort of dog who get's ignored. Which is so unfair as this dear chap deserves so much better. 

This little Bodeguero is with our foster mum Isabelleke near the Refugio. He nearly ten years old, a real cuddle bug, loves people and while OK with the pack he needs more calm in his older years.

Please consider these 'left behind' souls. They are all good dogs and deserve to be loved. They will love you back a thousand fold. Forever. 

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

January 20, 2020

Baza and Cala: two abandoned soulmates who deserve the best life from now on

Cala and Baza, two soul mates, mother and daughter, or sisters, or? We will never know. They are always together so they can be strong together, because they support each other. They were noticed at a gathering where there was a meeting taking place for some organisation or other. When someone left their car door open, these two sweeties just hopped on board where they nestled  together in the back seat. 

Thus they ended up with us. They are two very nice rascals, very cheerful, friendly, cordial and cuddly. They have certainly been used to have a home, at some point. But when they came in they were dirty and full of vermin. This is all over now and they are waiting anxiously for that one owner. .. We'd love to get them adopted together. That is their big wish - and ours. That they should stay together. 

For more information on these two darlings, please click on their names ...

Baza  (with a tan and white face) and Cala (with a black, tan and white face)


                           Baza                                                                           Cala

January 18, 2020

At last ... a new computer!

The new MacBook Air is now functioning, thanks to the great people at the Apple Store.There may be some teething problems, but so far so good. 

Now, at last, when I click on a site I don't have to wait so long that I have time to go downstairs and make a cup of tea and walk Teddy the dog before the wretched thing downloads!!! The same with transferring photos and even typing - even that sometimes took an age on my old MacBook Pro. Tho to be fair it was over 10 years old. So a replacement was way overdue!

So, give me a day or so and I hope to be posting on a regular basis. Once I figure out how to download videos it will be even better. 

So thank you everyone who reads the blog for your patience for these long months.

January 09, 2020

Update: The electricity crisis

So the celebrations are over now, here in Spain. Since yesterday, so people are going back to work.  We are now dependent on a rented generator, which runs day and night, to keep our refugio going, It's at times like these that you realize what it means to have electricity. 

We have no water because the pumps do not work. All the puppies have colds because the heat lamps do not work. The clinic cannot function 100% because the devices do not work: the breathing machine, the infusion pump, the autoclave, none of them can work.  In short, the vets cannot work. A complete disaster. No internet, no heating, our electrically opted front door cannot open. A catastrophe.

We have now installed this generator for the time being but that costs us an average of 150 euros per day in fuel consumption and rent. We are hopefully waiting on the goodwill of a certified electrician who promised to come today to propose a project to us. So far, so good.

I would like to thank you all for the support and help of everyone who cares about the welfare of our dogs !! We will keep you informed. We do not yet know what we have to do to get the electricity back.  A new generator costs 7000 euros and that is a lot. But we keep our head straight!

Our Piet Hein - who would have thought it. So beautiful!

A little note about Piet Hein: He was the 'forgotten' dog in the killing station. He managed to keep alive by hiding away in a corner each time the day came for the euthanasia. He managed to do this three times before he came to the Refugio.  But his timidity was such that even with us he didn't want attention. He didn't know what love was. We kept him in the clinic to try to get him to eat and heal. Such a sweet, fragile little thing. 

And then his luck changed. He was adopted. This is what his owner says: 

First, happy new year to you and all your loved ones. 

All my kids give me love, balance and of course, complete loyalty ... What would I do without them, ..... and probably ... what would they have become without me ... πŸ˜‰

Piet has a big (very big) heart murmur, probably due to the suffering he's endued. He is under treatment. However, he is fine, he now weighs 10 kilos, and goes out for a little bit every day.
Only downside: he is anxious when I'm away, but when I return, what a reunion each time!

Kisses to the whole team!

January 04, 2020

The Refugio has no electricity ... 😨

It's been going on for weeks. Sometimes there was electricity, sometimes nothing. For weeks we'd been asking the company for help. They came to take a look, but said they couldn't find anything. Then last week they discovered that the cables that run above our Refugio had been damaged, maybe due to a storm or from some other cause. The damage was heavy - some lines were torn and some melted together. 

We are struggling with the intermittent supply because our water pumps, clinic, thermal lamps for the cages and much more are permanently in use, so the electricity is constantly shorting out. Every once in a while, we are completely without any electricity.

The electricity company doesn't want to do anything to repair this because it's 'private land'.  We pay nearly every two months a decent amount.  We are always on time and pay correctly, but now we just have to get on with it on our own. It doesn't count with them at all that there 350 dogs and 100 cats needing care every day and that good hygiene is necessary, to say nothing of the need to keep them all warm and to carry on with operations on dogs and cats badly needing help. 'They' are indifferent -  they just got back in their van back and off they went ... and here we are.

Now Dirk is trying to rent a generator but prices are extremely high,... they ask up to 70 euros a day and then you still have to reckon on paying for your diesel,... we are at the end of our tether. It's costing us €140 a day with all the associated expenses.

The repair could cost between 7.000-10.000 euros and we can only get a  quote after 7 January because until January 6th, Spain is "on hold", no one works. We have approached a variety of different company asking for their estimates,  but in the meantime we are in real misery and our dogs always bear the brunt.

I can't believe that as a company they just don't want to help,... their post is only 200 m away from our refugio but we have to get everything done ourselves. It's too crazy for words,... but they are not bothered.

We'd be grateful to have any ideas. Any advice. Do you have contacts in the electricity industry? Are you an engineer in this field? Do you know anything about the way electricity supply companies operate in Spain? Any help of whatever nature will be so gratefully received. The appropriate emails and contact details are on the website. 

As soon as we have more information about what it will cost to sort this out, we will update the blogs and let you all know how you can help, if you'd like to. Thank you.


Graciela: such a sweet character, despite the challenges she's faced

Sometimes dogs are doubly unlucky. Such is the case with gentle Gracielta, a beautiful Husky cross. First she was separated from her puppies, who were dumped on their own in a box in front of our gates. Suddenly, two weeks later, Graciela stood at our door with another puppy, Gotita. We suspected that she was also the mum of the pups we had taken in a couple of weeks before. When she saw them there was no doubt at all. She was beside herself with happiness to be reunited with them. It was lovely to see.

Graciela's puppies were adopted and she was adopted separately together with her daughter Gotita.  But due to circumstances beyond their control, circumstances having nothing to do with these two darlings, they had to look for a new home. At first we wanted to keep them together but later realised that they'd be fine if they were adopted separately. Gotita has been in her new home since May this year and is doing well. 

Now it's Graciela's turn. She's been with us for nearly five years and is 9 years old. It's time that she had a new home where she can be loved and spoiled. Graciela is a calm, soft creature who sometimes needs to have a little time on her own to have a  nap. She has very soft, long, thick fur. She's a whopper and also an affectionate cuddle bug. She loves to go for a walk and is fine with children. Who will take Graciela into their home and their heart? Don't let her wait any longer.

For full information about this gentle, beautiful dog, please click here

January 01, 2020

A happy pussy cat : Mila found her golden basket

Mila's kind adoptant writes: Mila (ACE Primula) has been with me for over a month now but she is doing great, her big brother Red is also very happy with herπŸ˜ƒπŸ₯°


Hello? Are you coming to give me a cuddle?

Last time it was a great success. If you were not able to come then, here's another chance to visit us. You'll be very welcome 

When:  from 23rd to 25th March (2 nights).
Price: € 275 for flights from Brussels, overnight stays, breakfast and airport-hotel bus transfer.

Activities: A visit to the refugio and dinner with Fabienne and people from the team. And of course plenty of hugging and walking with the dogs. You'll be staying near the beach and in the center of the charming town of La Cala de Mijas. We will fly dogs home to their golden baskets on on the return trip.

Number of places: 26

Are you coming? Do you have any questions? Send an email to pr.belgie@ace-charity.org. for full details and more information.

Happy New Year .... success and happiness in 2020!