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APCA is a non-profit making organisation and was founded in 1958 by two women who were intent on saving and protecting abandoned dogs. They brought a piece of land (1200 m²) with a small house in Sao Pedro de Sintra to shelter 25 dogs. Today, the kennels still remain there but the number of dogs has grown to an average of 80. In 1995, APCA was granted the status of Public Utility by the Prime Minister, Dr Aníbal Cavaco Silva. The Report and Accounts are submitted and approved by the Council of Ministers each year.

The mission of APCA is to rescue just some of the many abandoned dogs roaming the streets and roads of Portugal, to treat them and house them until such time as new homes can be found for them. Each dog entering the kennel is vaccinated and all adult females are spayed by a veterinarian who spends eight hours a week working at the kennel. When the dogs are found new homes, they are fitted with identification chips. APCA does not have a policy of euthanasia for dogs unless they have a terminal illness with no hope of recovery.

APCA strives to find good, caring and protective homes for the dogs in their care who have generally suffered enough. However, in a country where there is little respect for animal life, dogs are sometimes returned when the owner has tired of them. APCA has also developed a sponsorship scheme called ‘godparenting’ for dog lovers who are unable to adopt a dog but are happy to contribute to the care of a dog and to visit and walk them, when possible.

APCA does not receive any financial support from the government and relies solely on membership subscriptions, sponsorships and voluntary donations. However, it is a constant battle trying to cover the costs of veterinary care, food, transport and the remuneration costs of the three kennel employees. APCA incurs absolutely no administrative charges and all office work is undertaken on a voluntary basis, ensuring that any donations are channelled directly to the dogs themselves.

If you would like to help, there are so many ways….even a little goes a long way. Please consider adopting, sponsoring or godparenting a dog, contributing money, food or medical supplies or giving a little of your time and affection for a good cause. We would love to hear from you and you can contact us through the website, by sending an email or writing to us.

Elected Members of the last General Assembly:

Assembly Board:
President - Dr. Rodrigo Alexandre Sá Da Costa Marques Bom
Director - Natália Maria da Costa Correia
Director - Maria Antonieta Paraíso Pezo

Board of Directors:
President - Ana Sofia Almeida Gonçalves
Director - Susana Maria Colaço Correia
Director - Nuno Luís Miguel Marques Agostinho

Financial Comittee
President - Carlos Miguel Rodrigues Pires
Director - Cristina Isabel Colaço Correia
Director - Ana Luísa Flor das Neves

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