The symbol of an animal (nearly always a dog), with a red line through prohibiting entry, is seen everywhere. Sometimes it's worded gently (“Our doggy friends ...”) but the meaning is the same: no access unless they are guide-dogs. However the Automobile Museum in Malaga has decided to try out an innovative idea, allowing people to bring their dogs in every Monday, starting on 15 January. The move coincides with the start of the museum's new extended opening hours, now from Monday to Sunday, 10am to 7pm.
The museum will be the only big exhibition centre in Malaga city - and one of the few in the whole country - that allow pets into their display areas. The others only make an exception for guide dogs.
“Only the Museo Europeo de Arte Moderno in Barcelona allows people to bring in their pets on two specific days,” said the director of the Malaga museum, Patricia Rueda.
Among the rules that will accompany this initiative is that people remember that they are “ultimately responsible, to all intents and purposes, for any damage their pets may cause either to other animals, people or the display itself.”
The museum also makes it clear that any member of its staff may “request a pet owner to leave the premises if they consider that the behaviour of the pet is not in accordance with the rules established herein”.
“Owners are obliged to monitor and control their pets at all times, preventing any inconvenience that it may cause to other animals or people. When an animal appears to be acting aggressively, the owner must control it and leave the area immediately,” is also stated in the rules. And “only animals that meet the hygienic-sanitary conditions can access the Automobile and Fashion Museum. The owner must carry the documentation for the animal, in accordance with the legislation in force.”
“Animals must be on a lead and have identification papers. Registered dangerous breeds must wear a muzzle and the lead must be fixed and non-extending. The animal must be under the control of an adult who may be requested at any time to produce evidence of the mandatory licence and civil liability insurance for the animal,” warns the museum.
Obviously, “the animals' owners have the responsibility, or risk being fined, to immediately pick up any excrement and place it in a bag in one of the bins distributed around the outside of the building.”
And lastly, the museum warns that “every day, places of leisure are becoming more 'pet friendly' and up until now, no other museum or cultural venue has allowed pets to enter. The unfriendly behaviour of our visitors, or the repeated failure of people to respect the rules, could result in the cancellation of the initiative.”
New opening hours
At the same time as the launch of this initiative, the Automobile Museum has decided to extend its opening hours, now opening from Monday through to Sunday from the 15 January. Access to dogs, however, will be limited to Mondays.