Perry Road - awaiting council approval

For those of you who drive past Perry Rd, you will have noticed a dramatic change in the landscape. For those who do it regularly, you will have also noticed that the works seems to have stalled. This is because the construction aspect has finalised, and we are awaiting sign off from Dandenong Council and the issuing of the new land titles. We hope this will occur by the end of June.

This will be the point in which our new home address of 26 Aegean Ave, Keysborough, 3173 will be born. 

On the other side of the fence, the planning for the new building is in full swing. The team of various consultants has been assembled to take us forward. Our architect has almost completed the design drawings and the engineers have commenced work on their bit. Whilst the planning continues, we are working through the formalities with Council and we are expecting these to wrap up shortly, concluding with the endorsed planning permit issued.

The tender process lies ahead, which we hope to start around August this year. Four builders will be invited to submit a proposal. Once the builder is chosen and all is going well, construction is expected to commence before the end of the year. Until tender schedules have been received, the build time is uncertain but estimated to be about 9 months. 

The final shelter design incorporates the world best practices for shelters and will be built in two stages. Stage one will include our animal pens and adoption areas, publicly accessible veterinary clinic and room for a groomer. Stage two will house additional animal areas and boarding kennels. The new shelter will have larger pens, as we now do in our temporary home, and includes more options for income generation to ensure a sustainable future such as the boarding kennel facility and groomer, as afore mentioned.

The plans are on display at our temporary shelter, so if you’re in the area please stop in and look them over. 

Megan Seccull

Perry Rd – Construction of the new premises.

The Committee of Management has been working hard on finalising the design of the new buildings. 

A workshop was held on Jan 16th with representatives from Therian (architects) Savills (our construction project managers) TrevorMain (Quantity surveyors) and AAPS to explore ways of increasing revenue and reducing the construction costs. Ideas such as the creation of boarding facilities and an increase in consulting and surgery rooms in the vet clinic are possible outcomes.

The new plans are nearing completion. The initial plans were promising, had wonderful architectural features and were discussed for some time, but the welfare of the animals in the new facility was constantly on the minds of the relocation committee. In late 2018, two staff members and one Committee member received a scholarship to attend Battersea Animal Shelter in the UK, and the learnings from this trip were paramount in the alterations to the designs. The first aspect of the design to change was the size of the animal pens. Battersea have put into practice research that shows the bigger the pen for each animal, the less their behaviour deteriorates during their stay and the more adoptable they are. As we are aiming for our new premises to be best-practice in all areas of operation, we redesigned with this principal in mind i.e. begin with larger pens and design everything else to suit.  

We have received the finalised internal drawings and are now waiting on the next version of drawings that the Council have stipulated in the planning permit. These will be ready soon and will form the basis of the consultant’s input as stipulated by Council.

Over the next few weeks, the drawings will be collated along with, updated consultant reports and AAPS inputs into a submission for our endorsed planning permit. Council will take some time to review the submission before granting the endorsed planning permit, but once received we can finalise the construction drawings, start the tender process, select a builder and focus on obtaining the necessary building permits.

Megan Seccull

Perry Road - Civil Works

The New Year has brought with it positive progress at our future site. The civil works at Perry Rd continued on schedule for most of January and February and those driving by would be impressed by the amount of heavy machinery constantly moving the earth around. They, seemingly independently, yet obviously coordinated, have finally finished and moved on.

The coordination of the machines is made possible because the required levels specified by Melbourne Water are created in engineering programs that produce data files that can be loaded into the GPS systems of the heavy machinery. A bit of technical mumbo jumbo if you ask us but we are all impressed, here at AAPS, by their Google maps for moving dirt.

As mentioned, the works moved on schedule for most of January and February minus a few delays to sort out the electrical components. However, this has now been sorted and the civil works, like asphalting the road, are getting back underway. We envisage the civil works to be completed by early March 2019.

If you happen to be driving past, please take a minute to turn off into Aegean Ave and have a look at how much progress has been made. The road is clearly apparent, and the footpath has been created and very step forward is a huge leap for our animal kind!

A shot of the levelling work completed by the heavy machinery at Perry Rd.

A shot of the levelling work completed by the heavy machinery at Perry Rd.

Perry Road - Building the Facility

The AAPS Committee of Management, in conjunction with our new General Manager Sean Coleman have been working hard on finalising the design of the new buildings.

A workshop with representatives from our building partners and AAPS was held to explore ideas such as the creation of boarding facilities and an increase in consulting and surgery rooms in the vet clinic. It was a very productive workshop and we are now waiting on the next version of drawings. These will be ready soon and a submission for our endorsed planning permit will commence thereafter.

Council will take some time to review the submission before granting the endorsed planning permit, but once received, we can focus wholly and solely on getting this facility built for the animals that need us.

Megan Seccull

The AAPS team were thrilled to be awarded a share in a grant from the O'Briens Real Estate Foundation. The foundation loves to see the positive impacts their sponsorships have on the local communities and we intend to put their generous donation to good use.

Our General Manager, Sean Coleman (far right), happily accepted the grant on behalf of the Shelter this week.

Our General Manager, Sean Coleman (far right), happily accepted the grant on behalf of the Shelter this week.

Animals are the main occupants of the shelter, which leaves minimal space for essential items such as food, bedding, enrichment toys and much more. This is why the grant will be put towards building necessary storage and shelving units throughout the shelter. Providing the very best care for the animals is our number one mission, along with providing a safe and organised environment for our staff and volunteers.

From all of the animals, staff and volunteers at AAPS we thank the O'Brien Real Estate Foundation for their support, kind grants and donations such as these (no matter how big or small) allow us to continue our animal welfare work within the community.

If you would like to know more about the O’Brien Real Estate Foundation, you can visit their website www.foundation.obrienrealestate.com.au

Megan Seccull

Temporary Premises – 132 Bangholme Rd, Dandenong South 

After many months of hard work adhering to regulations, it is a pleasure to report that we finally have our full Certificate of Occupancy and approval from Dandenong Council. This means that we are fully operational and are now able to start caring for dogs too.

The dog kennel designs were tweaked to incorporate the research gained by the team from their trip to the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home. The changes we have made will benefit the mental well-being of animals that come into our care in an aim to reduce length of stay periods.

Once construction activities ceased, an earnest clean up of the premise begun and the staff were happy to showcase the temporary home on December 2nd at our Christmas Market Day.

Perry Rd - Subdivision 

Anyone driving past in recent times would be impressed by the heavy machinery working hard to prepare the site of our new facility. Work started in September and since then, the progress is obvious every day. First to go sadly were over 40 trees along with the blackberries and gorse bushes. The next stage was taking down the infrastructure like the house and sheds. Recent work has focussed on bringing in the required fill and this is progressing quickly. 

Prior to the Christmas shut down, Sandridge Roads are aiming to have completed the bulk of the fill, sewer connectivity, water mains, capping layer of the road and the roadside gutters. The final activity is the pouring of the asphalt and this will occur in mid-February. Allowing for the paper work process, we hope to have the Permit of Subdivision by the end of April 2019. 

works are underway at our Perry Rd site

works are underway at our Perry Rd site

Perry Rd – Construction of the new premises 

Two members of our team are heading to Brisbane to tour a newly built animal shelter and gain knowledge and helpful insights regarding the transition, design, and building processes.

The target is to then finalise the design, create the necessary documentation for council approval and be ready to start construction as close as practical upon receiving the Certificate of Subdivision. 

start imagining the new facility

start imagining the new facility

Megan Seccull

What a successful and uplifting day the Christmas Market was. Not only did we raise more than eleven thousand dollars for the animal shelter, but also the community turnout reassured us that we have done the right thing by keeping our doors open whilst the new facility is being built. 

From 10am-3pm we had a wonderful showing from the community with their furry friends come and enjoy tours of the temporary facility, get their pet photos with Santa, socialise with the cats, check out the buns and pigs room, eat the gourmet vegan food and sip ethically sourced coffee, and wonder around the market stalls. We got lucky with the weather too, having only a few drops of rain and gusts of wind. 

a beloved furry friend getting a photo with Santa

a beloved furry friend getting a photo with Santa

The hamper, raffle, and silent auction stalls were very popular and we appreciate everyone who donated items towards them. 

The wonderful Dianne giving a blessing of the animals made the day even brighter. She had quite a lively crowd of dogs gathered around, some noisier than others, but most hanging on every word and when it came time to sing Christmas carols the four-legged choir howled along, somewhat in tune. 

Dianne blessing the dogs

Dianne blessing the dogs

The day was topped off with a dynamic doggy parade with awards given to the oldest AAPS dog, best trick, best-behaved dog, best-dressed dog, bravest dog, and look-a-like dog and owner. 

the dynamic doggy parade getting underway

the dynamic doggy parade getting underway

A big thank you to the staff and volunteers for their time and the amazing effort they put in towards making this day happen.

Lastly, we would like to thank the community for their support during our time of transition. The market day support proved the work we do within the community is invaluable and we are glad to be able to continue helping animals in need of our care.   

Megan Seccull

Noah was engaged both day and night in feeding and caring for the animals, and did not sleep for the entire year aboard the ark. 

Now, we aren’t saying that we’re akin to Noah, but we are setting ourselves an ark like task of building a new animal welfare facility on land purchased on Perry Road, Keysborough that will speak to all walks of life. Its major focus will be on the animals that need our care.

We have this incredible vision and, like a dog with a ball, we are chasing it. "What if” is not in our vocabulary. To us, it’s also not a matter of building just an animal shelter; it’s a matter of building a facility that will benefit the wider community. 

Our dream is big and along with comfortable pens to house cats, dogs, rabbits, guinea pigs, birds, and all other animals in need, we will create outdoor areas for training and nourishment.

It costs a lot to care for all the animals and as a not-for-profit organisation we rely heavily on donations from the public to carryout our good work. We know it’s not viable to continue like this, therefore, at our new place we will set up a vegetable garden to grow some of our own food and plan to install solar panels and water tanks. 

Preparations and works for this new facility on Perry Road are underway and we are fully aware that we need to generate income for future years, so we are hoping to build in possibilities for this purpose along the way. 

You may be wondering how we got to this point, it has been and will further be one of the most challenging things we are going through, but we wouldn’t change it. We strive to make a difference in our community everyday and we relish the opportunity to extend our reach.

The journey towards this new animal safe haven began in years previous and you can follow our way forward on our Facebook page and website.  

“Protecting animals, changing lives”, is our mission statement and we are dedicated in continuing to make a difference in the community.    

Megan Seccull


We have endured some hectic and exciting times over the past few months preparing our temporary home, 132 Bangholme Road, to be fit for animal and human habitation. Despite the former factory being the best fit as our temporary shelter it has presented some complexities. Currently, we are working on getting the drainage, ventilation, and temperature control up to Animal Shelter Code of Practice Standards, whilst also meeting various Building Regulations and Council Permit conditions. These requirements are close to being completed and we expect to be fully operational and housing animals in need of care in the near future.


In further exciting news the journey towards our future home at Perry Road is underway. Sandridge Roads Pty Ltd outbid four other companies for the right to undertake the civil works on site. It is hard to envisage the scale of works required but according to Melbourne Water specifications we are required to raise the 15 acres by one metre so ground water run-off is controlled. Works are scheduled to take a number of weeks and will see us to February 2019 as a minimum. 

Our Subdivision Permit (the breakup of our title into six smaller lots) has been endorsed by Council. Once the above-mentioned works have been completed, the relevant authorities and Dandenong Council will apply their checks and balances before issuing the final Plan of Subdivision (POS). We are hoping for this around Feb/March 2019. The POS is required prior to the commencement of any building works.

Dandenong Council issued the Planning Permit for the construction of our new home earlier this year. This came with 13 pages of conditions, which the Committee of Management, our relocation manager, and our architects Therian Pty Ltd are working through as quickly as possible to get endorsed. Once this is done, we will enter the tender process phase to select the right builder.

We are committed to keeping you up-to-date with our progress. If you would like to learn more specific information feel free to contact our relocation manager Scott via email: relocation.manager@aaps.org.au

Megan Seccull


The compulsory purchase of our former site in Keysborough, by the Department of Education, lead us to purchase a new site. The Keysborough site was closed on June 30th 2018 and as the newly acquired land, in Perry Road Dandenong, is not yet habitable we are currently operating from a transitional site.

We are aiming to build a new shelter on the land we have purchased, which will be able to house double the amount of animals we currently save every year. This new shelter is still in its planning stages and due to the required vacation of our Keysborough site, we have since obtained a temporary facility that will allow us to continue to operate until our new home is finished. This temporary facility is located in Bangholme Road, Dandenong South.

Unfortunately, due to zoning restrictions we were unable to relocate our outpatient vet clinic and as such this will be closed until we move to our final home in Perry Road.

At present, we are working closely with council to ensure we meet all requirements for both sites and we appreciate your support during this difficult and ever changing process. We will continue to keep you up to date with all of our relocation news via this page. Questions are always welcome and we aim to be completely transparent during this challenging time. You are welcome to contact our committee via email: president@aaps.org.au or via phone: 9798 8415.


Our final home in Perry Road will be a sanctuary, not just a shelter. A place where animals will have their lives turned around. A place where they are loved, warm, and we can find them a 'forever' family. Our new home will double our capacity and allow us to save twice as many animals as we can now.

Our mission has been to never turn an animal away and this new facility will allow us to continue to provide an open door policy for our community and the animals who need us.


Our biggest hurdle is raising funds. As a not-for-profit, self funded animal shelter we rely on the kindness of our supporters in helping deliver the best for all animals that fall under our care. Donations will help us build the sanctuary we are so desperate to deliver the community andmost importantly, help us save the lives of many animals every year. Our vision is big and achievable but we need your help.

Megan Seccull


We are so thrilled to announce that all of our animals are now either in homes, foster or rescue placements and our shelter is empty and ready to finalise our move. We can not express enough, our gratitude to all those that helped us and for the tireless efforts of our staff and volunteers to make this happen. So many animals are now in loving families, or in foster or rescue awaiting a loving family to call their own.

To all of the families who adopted, the amazing foster carers, incredible rescue groups and other animal shelters who joined with us and helped us reach this point, we are forever grateful.

As of Friday 2pm we lock the gates and say farewell to our Homeleigh Road site. Our new temporary shelter is a hive of activity and we are settling in as quickly as we can.

Please note that all operations from the Homeleigh Road site will cease as of Friday, however our phones will continue to be operational (albeit diverted initially) from our new site, so there will be someone to answer or return your call if you need us.

The new temporary shelter at 132 Bangholme Road, Dandenong South will be open in the coming weeks and we will keep you updated with all of our progress. If you need any help, please contact us via phone 9798 8415, email or via facebook message.

Farewell Homeleigh Road and here is to the next chapter.



Megan Seccull


Our Animal Shelter is relocating and 126 animals currently in our care need to be placed into homes by 20th June 2018. From today until June 20th all adoption fees will be halved.

Our current shelter at Keysborough has been acquired by the Education Department and although we have purchased a new property to develop, it won’t be ready in time to meet the deadline when we have to vacate. A temporary location has been found however due to all the Council requirements that we need to conform to, we are greatly concerned we may end up with a number of animals and no place to house them.

With your help we are hoping to find homes for approximately 100 cats and 26 dogs. We need help to put a call out far and wide for foster carers, rescue groups and the general community to step forward and offer either temporary or permanent homes for these lovely animals.

A new Committee of Management was elected 12 months ago and was charged with the enormous task of moving the entire shelter by June 30th this year. It soon became apparent that the site purchased in Perry Road, Keysborough would not be ready in time, so the search began for a temporary site. After visiting all manner of properties in the Dandenong area, each with their own logistical problems, we finally found a temporary home that ticked most of the boxes and we rejoiced.

We expected a few problems in readying this site for animal use, however not the roller coaster ride we’ve endured. We now have 6 weeks to go until we have to move and although on the threshold of Council signing our permit, we will still have to fit out the property with pens and facilities to care for the animals to be housed there.

We cannot risk having animals and no place to take them.

The Australian Animal Protection Society is a not for profit organisation that receives no government grants but relies solely on donations to operate. AAPS have never refused to accept an animal into its care and have worked tirelessly over the last 40 years to give shelter and a future to thousands of animals.

We intend to continue this work once we are settled into our temporary site at 132 Bangholme Road, Dandenong South but we just have to ensure the animals currently in our care are safely settled elsewhere and request your help to facilitate this outcome.

If you can adopt, please visit, if you can’t – please share, if you are from a rescue group or are interested in fostering please call our office on 9798 8415.

For any questions, or if you would like to discus this with us further please contact our committee on president@aaps.org.au

Megan Seccull