Mat-Su Shelter Workers Cope With Sharp Influx of Rescued Dogs

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

The Matanuska Susitna Borough shelter has had plenty of ups and downs in its short history.  Only last October, the shelter celebrated its one-year anniversary as a no-kill cat shelter.  Since then, the shelter has marked close to a year as a no-kill dog shelter.   And, last November, shelter workers rescued a dozen dogs, six of them newborn puppies, from an abandoned tent outside of Talkeetna.  Workers had to reach those dogs by snowmachine. But nothing like this week’s influx of 157 dogs had been anticipated.   Mat Su Borough public information officer Carol Vardeman is now on scene at the shelter.   She says workers are coping, with the help of volunteers.

Vardeman says it appears that all the rescued dogs will be housed at the shelter for now.

The rescued dogs need to be brought back to health before they become adoptable.  Shelter officials are spending donated cash on medicine.    Vardeman says a Mat Su radio station is hosting a fund-raiser to buy micro chips for the dogs.   She says, as the incident unfolds, needs will change.

More than 3,500 animals have passed through the shelter in the past year or so.   And staff have helped to return 561 lost pets to their owners.

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