Many tourists from all over the world like to enjoy a vacation in beautiful Portugal. But for most dogs, the country is anything but an oasis of relaxation. There are thousands of abused, abandoned dogs and cats there. Many people want to help such a four-legged friend and therefore decide to adopt a dog from Portugal. We give tips on what to look out for.
Dogs from Portugal: 7 Reasons to Adopt
Many four-legged friends are also looking for a new home in German animal shelters. Still, there are good reasons why a dog from Portugal can be the right choice:
- Animal shelters in Portugal are overcrowded – many dogs suffer badly as a result
- Dog ownership in Portugal is often not appropriate to the species
- Portuguese hounds are left behind or killed when the season is over
- The selection of dogs is larger than in the local animal welfare
- Seniors or handicapped dogs have almost no chance in Portugal
- Reputable clubs pay attention to thorough health checks
- In a nutshell: the chance to give a dog a new life
Portugal is a popular vacation destination. But most travelers encounter one or more street dogs there. Since many Portuguese simply abandon unwanted offspring and do not want to spend any money on neutering their four-legged friends, new strays are constantly being added. The city animal shelters are overcrowded. Life in such an animal shelter cannot be compared to that in Germany. Because the animal shelter employees hardly have time to deal with individual animals. Since the space is cramped, it can lead to biting.
Since 2014, mistreating pets in Portugal has been punishable by imprisonment of up to one year and heavy fines. The judiciary can punish the abandonment of animals with a prison sentence of up to six months. But nothing has changed for the fate of many Portuguese dogs. Owners still leave sick, old, or annoying dogs in lonely places and drive away by car.
The dog runs afterward until it can no longer. Then he sits back in the place where his owner left him and waits – a heartbreaking sight.
Animal Welfare and Placement of Portuguese Dogs
There are now many animal welfare organizations in Germany that place dogs from Portugal. If you want to adopt a dog from Portugal, choose an association that supports local animal welfare. These include partnerships with animal shelters, as well as educational work and castration campaigns. In this way, you not only give a four-legged friend the chance of a new life, but you can also improve the situation in their home country. In the following we present some examples of committed associations:
Dog friends Portugal n.e.V. The main focus of the association is on local help. Together with Portuguese veterinarians, the association carries out castrations and campaigns against abuse. Dog lovers attach great importance to thoroughly examining the health and nature of the dogs that come to Germany. Dogs from partner organizations as well as dogs that are already in German foster homes are available for placement.
Hundehilfe Portugal is an association of German and Portuguese animal friends. Together they support two animal shelters in Evora and are committed to animal welfare on-site. Most of the dogs to be referred are in the Portuguese partner animal shelters.
Tiersinfonie Anou e.V. is a committed association that works with two Portuguese animal shelters. Animal rights activists want to sustainably improve the lives of dogs in Portugal. For dogs available for mediation on the lovingly designed websites, they do not want to find just any, but THE home.
If you fall in love with a dog from Portugal while on vacation and would like to take it home with you, animal welfare organizations can also help. Because before your four-legged friend is allowed to travel to Germany, he needs vaccinations and ideally an all-round health check. Experienced clubs will help you to bring the dog safely to Germany.
Foster Homes for Dogs From Portugal
Many associations that operate animal welfare abroad work together with private foster homes in Germany, Austria, or Switzerland. This has some advantages: Here you have the opportunity to visit the dog at the foster home. You can get an impression of whether the chemistry between you is right. The foster home can provide more information about the dog’s character than an animal shelter in Portugal. Often the volunteer helpers can already walk the four-legged friend and thus determine whether he is fearful or brave. It is also easier to provide information about compatibility with cats or children. A Portuguese dog from a foster home is well suited for dog lovers who cannot prepare for every four-legged surprise. Thus, dogs from foster homes are good for first-time dog owners.
Speaking of foster home: If you can imagine giving a dog a loving temporary home, you can apply to many associations as a foster home. This responsible task is particularly suitable for dog-experienced animal lovers who have a lot of time. Usually, the clubs finance feed and veterinary costs while you help a dog from Portugal to arrive in his new country.
Mediterranean Diseases in Dogs From Portugal
If you adopt a dog from Portugal, it will have an EU pet passport with it. He must have a valid rabies vaccination and be identifiable via a microchip. Every reputable animal welfare organization checks the dogs for typical diseases before they travel to their new home. In Portugal, these include leishmaniasis, the heartworm disease dirofilariasis, babesiosis, and ehrlichiosis. It is advisable to present your dog to a veterinarian shortly after arriving from Portugal and have it examined thoroughly. This is especially true for animals that come directly from Portugal.
A Dog From Portugal in a New Everyday Life
A dog from Portugal does not know many things that we take for granted: sleeping in the house, walking on a leash, food to eat.
Depending on your previous history, it may be that training and a lot of patience will be required in order to cope with everyday life with your new companion. Maybe he doesn’t like to be alone or he gets sick while driving. Make contact with a dog training school so that you can ask the trainer for advice if necessary. Do not let your four-legged friend off the leash in the first few weeks and give yourself and him plenty of time to build mutual trust.