Association for the Protection of Animals in the Algarve

(Portuguese registered Charity Nº 474536)

About Us

Until 2012 APAA was associated to RSPCA International and to achieve this status we had to meet a number of criteria demonstrating that we were actively involved in animal welfare, that we maintained adequate accounting and other records and that we had a proper management structure.   The RSPCA has now phased out this scheme and is not replacing it:  instead they are expanding the ways in which they provide support through better communications and the provision of more networking opportunities.   However, APAA will continue to operate to the same standards.

At the end of August 2008 our Rescue Centre had to close and from February 2009, when a new Management Board was elected, we began to save towards opening another rescue centre.   In December 2009 we heard that we had been left €100,000 by Inez Soares da Rosa with which to build a new Rescue Centre and we immediately began looking for land in the Portimão/Monchique area as this was where we had volunteers who had helped originally.We then spent almost 2½ years looking at land.  We found many suitable plots which we could afford to buy and and on which we could afford to erect kennels:  but in every instance we received a negative response either from the Câmara or from the Ministry of Agriculture - on several occasions from both.

One piece of land was offered with all the requisite permissions but for several reasons the Board decided that it could not proceed.   The land was north east of Faro (well outside our normal operating area), the purchase price (and the estimated 10% additional legal and financial costs) would have left insufficient funds with which to drill a bore hole, bring in electricity and erect kennels and ancillary buildings;  and the Board did not feel that it could purchase the land and then wait until sufficient money had been saved in order to complete all the necessary works.   The project had been based on taking in 50 dogs and some cats and it was not considered viable to open a rescue centre that could (on the available finances) take in fewer than a dozen animals.

Eventually we decided that we had tried hard enough to find land and suggested that we should consider using the legacy for capital projects for existing animal sanctuaries; this was agreed by the Executor but he also said that he would like to see us expanding our feeding programme.   These suggestions were considered and approved at an Extraordinary General Assembly held on 22nd April 2012 and are now being put into effect.

We have also been involved in food bank collections at supermarkets and in receiving from supermarkets their split bags and dented tins of animal food .   This food is then distributed to those people who, with limited means, are feeding stray, abandoned and rescued animals - although we are finding that we are not now getting as much food from the supermarkets.

A large part of our work involves assisting people of limited means who want to spay/neuter their animals or whose animals need veterinary treatment.   

If you care about animals and wish to protect them from cruelty why not become a member of APAA, or become a volunteer helping in one of our shops?

For more information please contact us at

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