Westside Animal Shelter seeks dog house donations ahead of winter months

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – 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 go down, calls from concerned neighbors go up. 

“It can be deadly, you know, temperatures here can get to negatives,” said Sgt. Andres Couch with the CABQ Animal Welfare Department. “We do get a lot of calls, especially when the first snow hits a lot of animals, and not having, or not having dog houses for us to do welfare checks for the animal.”

After the first snow last year, animal welfare officials say they got more than 50 reports of dogs without shelter in a single day. 

The city knows dog houses are not cheap, that’s why they give away free ones, along with supplies to help insulate them.

“It’s more if like you’re low income or like you just don’t have the funds to provide or pay for a dog house, so we can actually give you a dog house for free,” said Couch. 

But the city can’t give what it doesn’t have– that’s where the community comes in.

“People can bring donations of dog houses large, small, medium size, whatever you want to give us, cash, checks all that stuff,” Couch said. “We’re looking for a dog house, it has four walls and a roof of course, you know insulation, or you know has a little door or even like a flap, for like wooden barrier flap, that can also be accessible dog house. But just something that’s basic, you know, an igloo, dog igloo, small little dog house that has four walls and roof, that’s sufficient.”

Donations can be dropped off at any city shelter.

“Or there’s a location called Kennel Kompadres in Corrales,” said Couch. 

Helping those who can’t afford a dog house keep their pets safe, and warm during the fall and winter.

“The temperatures are gonna start dropping here soon, especially the last couple nights is when the kind of nasty weather with the rain and the wind chill. So want to get as many dog houses out there and anybody who needs the backups just come and get it,” Couch said. 

If you have a dog outside, you can get cited for not having a proper dog house, fined $500, or 90 days in jail.

Click here for more information on the city’s “Dog House Drive.”