NMDOG provides winter outreach to New Mexico’s chained and penned dogs in an effort to help them survive the harsh and often deadly effects of extreme weather. On several “outreach events” per year (usually on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve, and Valentine’s Day) NMDOG selects a community to service, and provide to the most at-risk dogs in that area whatever they may need to get through the winter months: a doghouse, straw, food, a harness, or medical services.
During outreach, we watch half-frozen dogs drag themselves to piles of straw; we take unwanted litters of puppies for transfer to puppy rescues; we schedule spay/neuter appointments. Some of the dogs we service will be surrendered to us by their guardians. These pups are taken into the NMDOG program to start life off the chain. We even carry out the bodies of those for whom help came too late. Sometimes, all we can give these dogs is a dignified end.
What we are hoping for is that the seed planted with the human guardian sprouts and grows long past our time there. When we descend upon a community during the frozen winter months, people are taken aback for a moment when they realize that we are out there for their dog. Our commitment to their dog very often causes a small shift in perception, allowing them to see their dog in a new light. This is where true change begins. This is where a little kindness and respect create an educational opportunity that will outlive the need for straw and with a little hope, grow into a kinder, gentler environment for dogs.
Although outreach is physically and emotionally exhausting, these missions are some of the most powerful and rewarding experiences we have. NMDOG outreach missions provide life-saving services and supplies to the most vulnerable dogs in our communities.
View the slideshows (link to Facebook) below to catch a glimpse of what NMDOG’s Community Outreach is all about.