Beauty News

World’s Largest Dog Shelter, Caring for Over 2,000 Abandoned Dogs, Seeks International Support to Continue its Mission

Operated solely with donations, Territorio de Zaguates (Land of the Strays) is putting out a call for help so it can continue rescuing abandoned dogs.

SAN JOSé, COSTA RICA, November 15, 2022 / — Founded in 2006 by Lya Battle and Álvaro Saumet, and located in the mountains of Costa Rica, Territorio de Zaguates is renowned as the continent’s largest and most populated no-kill shelter, currently caring for over 2,000 dogs of all colors, breeds, and sizes.

The owners have managed to allocate hundreds of dogs to families nationwide, as well as internationally, over the years, but for many of their strays, the shelter ends up as a permanent home. All of the dogs have names, and all are fed, bathed and exercised on a regular basis.

But for Lya and Álvaro, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to make ends meet. Land of the Strays does not receive any government assistance and only exists thanks to donations along with the couple’s own money. Providing food, shelter, and health care for each canine costs them an average of $36 a month per dog.

“We rescue abandoned dogs in the worst condition imaginable and give them a second chance,” says Lya. “We take care of all their medical needs in order to recover and give them either a temporary home while they’re adopted, or a permanent one if they don’t. Right now, with over 2,000 dogs in our care, we are desperate for help. We’re looking for people to adopt, but if this is not something you can do, please sponsor a stray!”

Lya and Álvaro came up with the idea to use the extensive piece of land as a sanctuary because of Lya’s grandfather, who, as a dog lover himself, inspired her to use their family estate as the homeplace for a shelter. The couple started from scratch, rescuing the dogs themselves, feeding them, and caring for them using their own money. As time went by, the word spread, and more people became interested in helping them.

To find out more about this remarkable sanctuary and to make a donation, visit the website at

About Territorio de Zaguates

A dog sanctuary located in the mountains of Costa Rica, Territorio de Zaguates (Land of the Strays) provides a home for more than 2,000 dogs in need of a family. A non-profit organization, the shelter was founded in 2006 by Lya Battle and Alvaro Saumet who are strong believers in the promotion of well-being and respect for animals.

Lya Battle
Territorio de Zaguates
[email protected]

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