ALBUQUERQUE, NM — While dogs wait for their forever homes at Albuquerque’s Westside Animal Shelter, the city is asking the public to donate dog houses.
When temperatures drop, calls from concerned neighbors increase.
“It can be deadly, you know, the temperatures here can get below freezing,” said Sgt. Andres Couch with the CABQ animal welfare department. “We get a lot of calls, especially when the first snow hits a lot of animals, and we don’t have or don’t have kennels to allow us to check on animal welfare.”
After the first snowfall last year, animal welfare officials said they received more than 50 reports of homeless dogs in a single day.
The city knows that dog kennels don’t come cheap, so they offer free ones, along with supplies to insulate them.
“It’s more if you’re on a low income or just don’t have the funds to provide or pay for a doghouse, so we can give you a doghouse for free,” Couch said.
But the city can’t give what it doesn’t have – that’s where community comes in.
“People can bring donations of large, small, medium dog houses, whatever you want to give us, cash, checks, whatever,” Couch said. “We are looking for a niche, it has four walls and a roof of course, you know the insulation, or you know has a small door or even like a flap, for example a wooden gate flap, it can also be a niche accessible But just something basic, you know, an igloo, a dog igloo, a little little dog house that has four walls and a roof, that’s enough.
Donations can be dropped off at any shelter in town.
“Or there’s a place called Kennel Kompadres in Corrales,” Couch said.
Helping those who can’t afford a kennel keep their pets safe and warm through fall and winter.
“Temperatures will soon start to drop here, especially the last two nights which is when the weather is bad with rain and wind chill. So I want to have as many dog houses and anyone who needs backups come get them,” Couch said.
If you have a dog outside, you can be cited for not having a proper kennel, a $500 fine, or 90 days in jail.
Click here for more information on the city’s “Dog House Drive”.