Fondazione Gioia e Romeo ONLUS

The park is located in an easily reachable area from various towns of the district, along the main provincial road linking Altidona to Monterubbiano and it does not interfere with others activities of the neighbouring cities. The choice of the site has highly considered all kind of physiological requirements for a dog. As a matter of fact, its isolated location, though still well connected to the nearby villages, is far off environmental and noise pollution which are extremely negative stimuli influencing the dog´s stress level, considering and respecting the highly sensitive hearing and smell of the dog.

The main feature of the park is its green surrounding: its development is completely and thoroughly surrounded by nature, in order to fulfil at its best all the ethological dog needs and to think the structure as a pleasant esthetical site indeed, that people will enjoy visiting.

The external perimeter of the park is delimited by a fenced enclosure, in order to prevent dogs from climbing and escaping. In the entire enclosed zone where all the boxes are located, there are high growth trees to cast shade and keep the dogs cool. The park turfed areas are grown with grass, carefully mown to prevent the spreading of vermin and give the appearance of a pleasant and nice looking site.

In order to integrate more and more the refuge with the communities, the needs of the site´s users and supporters (public visitors and volunteers) have been considered, creating therefore welcome centres free of gates and barriers.

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In the first area of the park, hence we will find:

  • The entrance (1) and two parking spaces (2) both for staff and visitors.
  • A green fenced area equipped for the pet-therapy (3), the reassessment and rehab of the animals and the dog agility. This enclosure also welcomes events and information stands.
  • Four service structures:
    • (4) adoption and rehoming office, staff changing rooms.
    • (5) public vet parlour and site vet practice including grooming parlour (limited to refuge dogs).
    • (6) feed storage room and kitchen.
    • (7) organisation head office with seminary, schooling and gatherings rooms.
      Here classes and courses in zoo‐anthropology applied in educating the public about animals and environment peculiarities (underlining the exclusive extraordinary characteristics and unique excellent qualities of animals) will be offered and will find place. At the same time, thanks to the stimulating sensations and emotions awakened by the animal world, a precious educational heritage will be left both to young and adults that will hopefully develop awareness towards nature ´s creatures and their importance. The achievement of these projects will change the role of such a structure (refuge), for far too long considered at the edge of society into a point of reference to emphasize the rebirth of an empathic thought and collective endeavours by professionals and experts in the matter as a community service.

Fences and hedges (8) divide the park from the allocated area to keep the dogs in prefabricated enclosed kennel‐boxes (9)‐(15). This area is divided in various sectors to accommodate different kinds of dogs. There will be nurseries for puppies, kennels for dogs to be rehomed and also quarters for permanent residents and animals with behavioural disorders. A total of 106 dogs will find shelter in the refuge.

The building of the dog boxes applies to the legal requirements of subsection 3 of the County Regulation of 13/11/2001 n. 2, implementation of County law nr. 10 of 20/1/1997: “Rules subject to animals and prevention of strays”. A minimal total area of 8m2 (covered and open air spaces) per adult animal is expected. This area may be increased of 4m2 for each following animal.

All boxes are built following a similar three zones pattern:

  • The covered zone, a quiet and sheltered pen with raised dog beds, where the animal can rest and find a safe and peaceful refuge
  • The shed zone with sun blinds
  • The open air zone

Each box has a safety double gated entrance in order to prevent dogs from escaping when accessed by staff. Moreover, there are four feeders in every boxes, each dog has its own, to avoid rows while feeding. Also a water bowl with a floating gauge system that fills back when water level lowers is provided. This system guarantees fresh and clean water all time and no stagnation. All boxes are lit for at least 12 hours daily, what keeps vermin, insects, germs and fungi totally away. Some of the pens will be provided with an auxiliary infrared heating lamp, burnings safe, and meant for older, weaker and fragile animals.

Opposite the pens, outdoors paddocks are located (16)‐(20), where the dogs are alternatively to spend part of the day.

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