Ikea store in Italy draws praise for opening its doors to stray dogs

Animal lovers have taken to social media to praise an Ikea store in Italy for opening its doors to stray dogs, with many posts showing the canines happily lounging among furniture displays.

Ms Martine Taccia posted a video on Facebook of two stray dogs enjoying the warmth provided by the rugs at the store in Catania.

"A good initiative to shelter the strays while it's raining outside," she wrote in Italian in the post on Nov 11.

"My reaction was pure amazement," Ms Taccia told animal news website The Dodo. "It's not a common thing."

The video has garnered more than 900,000 views.

Una bella iniziativa per dare riparo ai randagi mentre fuori piove.....tutto questo succede nel centro commerciale di...

Posted by Vittoria Taccia Gabrielli on Saturday, November 10, 2018

She added that the dogs are fed and pampered daily by Ikea employees and customers, some of whom have even adopted some of the strays.

Another customer, Ms Beppe Liotta, told The Dodo: "I felt great happiness at seeing dogs crouched in the exhibition space at the entrance of the Ikea."

Many others have shared photos of the dogs at the store on social media.

This is not the first time the Swedish furniture retailer has been associated with animal welfare.

In 2014, Ikea partnered animal welfare groups in a project called Home For Hope, where standing displays of dogs were placed among the store's furniture to attract potential adopters. Ikea outlets that took part in the campaign included those in the United States and Singapore.

ALSO READ: IKEA Singapore teams up with local animal rescue groups to promote adoption of stray dogs

This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.