CABQ Councilors fund doghouses for Animal Welfare Department

Shelter is as important for animals as it is for humans. Albuquerque City Councilors, Tammy Fiebelkorn (District 7) and Dan Champine (District 8) teamed up with the Albuquerque Woodworkers Association and the City Animal Welfare Department (AWD) to make sure more dogs in our community have shelter. Many companion animal guardians are not aware that dogs who live outdoors must be provided with a doghouse under our laws. Others simply cannot afford to purchase a doghouse. Still others lack the skill or ability to build one of appropriate size. Enter the AWD’s Community Doghouse Program. The program is aimed at providing shelter for dogs in need.

Councilor Fiebelkorn and Councilor Champine each provided $1,500 in constituent funding to the program. With those funds, the Albuquerque Woodworkers Association stepped in to build, customize {and deliver} 30 doghouses paid for with the Councilor’s $3,000.00 in funds.

“Dogs belong inside with their human families, but if they are made to live outside it’s vital that they be provided with good quality housing to protect them from the elements,” said Councilor Fiebelkorn. “Thanks to all the volunteers with Albuquerque Woodworkers Association for building these shelters for dogs in our community. The compassion you have shown is incredible and an excellent example of how our community comes together to help those in need.”

“I would urge everyone who cares about dogs to donate to this cause,” said Councilor Champine. “The Animal Welfare Department should be proud of their work to provide doghouses for those in our community who cannot afford to buy or build houses for their dogs. There are many ways we all can help AWD in their mission to provide excellent care and services to our residents and their pets.”

The Albuquerque Woodworkers Association is one of several donors who have contributed doghouses to the Community Doghouse Program. The Animal Welfare Department accepts donations of gently used and new doghouses, as well as donations of money and materials. The AWA provided plans and built the doghouses based on the specifications provided by Animal Welfare Department officials.

“These doghouses were built with waferboard in lieu plywood and that allowed us to build more houses for the program at a more reasonable cost.” said John M. Henderson, Vice-President of the Albuquerque Woodworkers Association (AWA). “They are finished with polyurethane to protect them from the elements. We believe they have a 10-year life expectancy and will provide great shelter for most dog breeds. We had 6-15 volunteers working in teams every weekend for a month in an assembly-line-like process, thanks to the workshop provided by one of our talented members. Our nearly 200 skilled members are always eager to engage in community projects and outreach.”

Animal Welfare Department Director Carolyn Ortega, believes the Department’s Doghouse Donation program has been a worthwhile and fulfilling undertaking, with hundreds of donated doghouses delivered to residents since the program’s inception. The lottery program has income and eligibility requirements and only residents of Albuquerque may sign up for the Doghouse Lottery Program.

“It has been wonderful to see the ‘OneAlbuquerque’ spirit in action with our community doghouse program,” said Director Ortega. “AWD appreciates all the community groups who have provided doghouses, because of their generous contributions, almost 300 pets have appropriate shelter.  We especially thank the Albuquerque Woodworkers Association who not only made and donated doghouses themselves but inspired many others to get involved and created the blueprints for future doghouses to be made.  We are grateful to Councilors Fiebelkorn and Champine sponsoring these efforts and supporting this program that provides doghouses to pet owners who need assistance.”