Dumped dogs have become pampered pooches at a North Wales animal refuge which has gone ‘green’ to provide underfloor heating in its kennels.
The £14,000 state of the art new system at North Clwyd Animal Rescue ensures new arrivals at the well-established home are warm as toast however bleak the winter.
That’s thanks to Denbigh-based renewable energy specialists Hafod Renewables who have installed a double helping of green power to keep their new arrivals cosy at the NCAR centre at Trelogan, near Prestatyn.
Hot water heated by a sophisticated air-source system powered by an array of solar panels is sent coursing through a quarter of a mile of plastic piping just beneath the floor of the kennels that house the latest arrivals.
It keeps the air temperature at a comfortable 20C and has replaced the old infra-red bulbs which used to ratchet up the centre’s electricity bills as well as blowing on a daily basis to the tune of £20 a pop.
David Jones, managing director of Hafod Renewables, said: “The underfloor heating system is very similar to the one I’ve got in my own home and works really well here because a conventional boiler would have been too hot for the dogs.
“The new underfloor heating system will now heat the room effectively and in fact air-source systems are extremely good at heating large spaces like this.
“It acts like a fridge in reverse – the back of a fridge is hot while the interior is cold and this just reverses the process so that the room is heated while the outside is cold.
“It should work very well here in combination with the solar panels and it will certainly be much cheaper than infra-red bulbs.”
The system will cost just £400 a year to run instead of £3,600, £2,000 of it spent on replacement bulbs, and will pay for itself in under five years of its 20-year lifespan.
As well as saving themselves money to be spent on their animals NCAR are saving the planet too because Hafod Renewables have cut carbon emissions on site by 80 per cent which amounts to over four tonnes of carbon dioxide per annum, the equivalent of planting 200 trees.
The period around Christmas is a critical one for NCAR, according to Nicky Owen whose mum, Anne founded the charity 40 years ago when a tiny lurcher dog was abandoned on her doorstep in Trelogan.
It now cares for over 1800 animals a year and currently has 100 dogs, 170 cats and 20 rabbits under its rooves at a cost of £1,000 a day with five dedicated charity shops in Denbigh, Prestatyn, Abergele, Mold and Colwyn Bay helping meet the bills.
Nicky said: “We tend to have a lot of older dogs abandoned before Christmas and then not long after we’re seeing puppies bought for Christmas turn up here.
“Some of them are in really poor condition and have obviously been outside for some time but we always do our best to look after them and the new under-floor heating means they’ll be toasty through the winter.
New arrivals enjoying their cosy kennels are two-year-old Malamute/German Shepherd cross Zak who had been left with an elderly lady in Talacre who struggled to cope with him and seven-year-old Staffie bitch Tilly, who has cancer and is seeing out her days in comfort.
Click here to see how Hafod Renewables can help you with Underfloor Heating