Red Deer and District SPCA fund development coordinator Lisa Ruether holds two reserve rescue dogs named Maemi and Melini. The two

SPCA staff taking home dogs as capacity reached

The Red Deer and District SPCA has gone to the dogs.


Advocate staff

The Red Deer and District SPCA has gone to the dogs.

The organization has been inundated with canines lately, so much so that it is currently two dogs over capacity with four going into foster care, meaning staff have taken them home.

SPCA executive director Tara Hellewell said they need people to adopt these dogs.

“This is the most dogs we’ve had in care for a long time,” said Hellewell. “Every kennel is full, we’re not overrun with them in every single room — that would jeopardize hygiene — but we are packed to the brim.

“We’re at the point where our kennels are full and we won’t cram them in. Right now we can’t take in any new dogs unless we can find some foster homes, which we’re desperately trying to find. Every day we get calls for help.”

While this has happened in the past with cats, it is atypical for the SPCA to be full up with dogs.

She cites several reasons, including an increase in dogs rescued from nearby reserves as the SPCA has been reaching out to area reserves. Six puppies are in the facility and they have also had quite a few owner surrenders, for various reasons.

“We have a number of different types of dogs, in all shapes and sizes, which is unusual,” said Hellewell.

In January, the SPCA had more than 60 adoptions, which is above a typical month of about 40 adoptions, said Hellewell.

“Usually it is pretty quiet after Christmas, but that was great news,” she said.

“I’d like to say it’s because I’m offering hot coffee to everyone, but that’s probably not it.”

Under normal circumstances, the group can hold about 30 dogs in the kennels at its building at 4505 77th St. Some rooms can be repurposed as temporary space, such as the grooming room.

“It is very urgent that people come to adopt these great dogs.”

For more information, contact the SPCA at 403-342-7722 or visit the office.

The SPCA is also developing a new website set to launch later this month.

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