If you lose your dog then the chances are it will end up at the sanctuary covering the area where the dog was found. This page is intended to help you understand how the system works and how the establishments are operated. Be aware that the town halls will stick rigidly to this proceedure but of course dogs can wander far and wide so it is worth checking both sanctuaries if you lose your dog.
In Spain every Town Hall is required by law to have a contract with a dog sanctuary. When a dog is found within the contracted area the Police Local or the town hall or indeed a member of the public the sanctuary van will attend and remove the dog to the sanctuary. There it will be checked to see if it is chipped. If it is the owner will be contacted and hopefully a happy ending. Of course the large majority are not chipped, they should be of course to comply with the law and for the good of the animal should it escape or get lost some other way.
There are two sanctuaries covering the area of HOVAR operations.
The Hondons, La Romana and all areas between and around are contracted to the CERECO sanctuary in Crevillente.
Aspe and surround areas are contracted to the ELDA sanctuary.
How they deal with the dogs is the same with regard to the lawful requirements, that is if a dog is not chipped it will be kept for 10 days. There are exceptions regarding dangerous or very ill dogs.
As many people are aware there are considerable differences in the two establishments. Why this is and why it remains so is matter of a seperate debate. Having visited both sancturies and been given tours round them I can say the following from my own observations
ELDA is located in the countryside. It is purpose built for housing dogs. There are a large number of good size pens in the open air with inside kennels to which the dogs have access at all times. There are seperate areas for dogs, puppies, bitches on heat. Large dogs and small dogs are kept seperate. They are closely watched to ensure that the animals are socialising and action taken if there are problems. There are very large outside runs to which all the classes of dogs are given access for several hours each day. The kennels are cleaned several times a day and in my experience are rarely soiled. The lady in charge seems to have names for all the dogs, the staff are aware of any medical issues and a vet is soon on the premises if required. I have always felt that they care about the dogs and give them affection as and when time allows. As a general rule they do not practice euthanasia unless one of the following applies. If the dog is deemed too ill to be homed or if the dog is violent towards other dogs or people and therefore cannot be homed safely.
CERECO is located in a warehouse on an industrial estate on the outskirts of Crevillente. Within the warehouse there are several large and small wire cages in which the dogs are confined on their arrival at the premises. There are usually several dogs to each cage. If they have no chip they are kept here for 10 days minimum and then some are taken to the adoption centre which is paid for by Cereco and run by a dedicated and caring team of volunteers who work long and hard to home as many dogs as possible. Once at the adoption centre they remain there until they are homed. Unfortunately only a small percentage of the dogs can be accommodated there and because of the large number (approximately 2000 per year) of dogs passing through the Cereco establishment it is inevitable that many of them are euthanased. I am assured that this process is carried out in exactly the same way as you would expect at any vets surgery i.e. tranquilised prior to the fatal injection. It is clear from my observations that the staff at Cereco holding center cannot form any relationship with the animals due to the environment within the establishment.
Telephone numbers ELDA 699771468. CERECO 606987198
There are of course several ways to get to both premises. I will give you the ways I know best.
ELDA. From La Romana take the road to Monovar/Pinoso for several K. When you come to that road turn right towards Monovar. On the outskirts of Monovar at the roundabout take the road to Elda and follow the dual carriagway for several K until you come to a sign for Poligono Industrial to the right. It is situated between 2 bridges a few metres apart. Take this road and foww signs for the estate . At the 3rd roundabout turn left onto the estate. Drive straight on until you come to a sign pinting left to the animals sanctuary ALBERQUE (I think). Right to the end of that road, out onto the dirt track to the sanctuary.
CERECO. From Aspe over the mountain to Crevillente. ONce there turn right and travel through the town and out the other side to the Repsol garage. Turn left there and after a short distance there is a roundabout. Right there into the estate after a short way turn right and CERECO is down there.