Shelter helps rehab animals
The Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society is one of a few animal shelters that rehabilitate animals who are scared, fearful and shy toward people.
That was the case with Kona, a 4-month-old Australian cattle dog, who arrived at the shelter this summer. She hid in the back of the kennel, making low growls, showing teeth and barking as staff approached her. The shelter’s behavior team, which specializes in helping animals overcome fear, knew that Kona needed extra time, patience and love.
Over the next two months, Kona made incredible progress and soon made her way to the adoption floor, and that is where Santa Fe resident Mara Brenner met the puppy.
“I picked Kona because I love blue heelers and she was the perfect size for my home,” Brenner said. “She was sweet, loving and came running to me. Clearly, the shelter staff had worked so hard with her to shift some of her fear.”
It’s been several weeks since Kona has been with Brenner, and she said it’s been quite an adjustment for her, but the dog is adorable, smart and energetic.
“It was quite an adjustment because Kona is my first dog. I’ve cared for many, many dogs over the years of friends and family, but this was my first, and a puppy as well. I had a sense of how it would be, but it was slightly more of an adjustment than I expected,” Brenner said. “And I was new to the experience of training a puppy, which felt overwhelming at times. Kona is smart and catches on quickly, but the process felt daunting to me the first week.”
Brenner and Kona frequent a dog park as Kona enjoys meeting new people and playing with other dogs. They have also enrolled in one of the shelter’s online training classes, which Brenner says is invaluable.
Brenner offers advice to potential adopters.
“If you are adopting for the first time, I would suggest making sure you have a support system. What made things shift for me is when my neighbor encouraged me to do things with Kona that I was nervous about doing,” she said.
“Based on our walks in the neighborhood, I wasn’t sure how she’d do at the dog park, if she’d come back to me when called and how she would be around other dogs and people,” Brenner added. “With my neighbors support, we’ve had daily successful dog park trips, a hike and backyard playdates.”
Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society: Wyatt is a 4-year-old handsome dog who weighs about 40 pounds. Wyatt is great with other dogs his size.
He is super sweet and even knows some commands including sit and shake.
Misty is a beautiful 2-year-old domestic short-haired kitty. She seeks affection and pets.
These and other animals are available for adoption from the Santa Fe animal shelter, 100 Caja del Rio Road. The shelter’s adoption hours during the pandemic are by appointment from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Call 505-983-4309, ext. 1610, to schedule an appointment.
Española Humane: Lisa is a highly intelligent and active dog. She is happy-go-lucky with pep in her step. She is 1 year old; weighs 43 pounds; is spayed, vaccinated; microchipped; and goes home with six months of heartworm prevention.
Hogan is a 2-month-old kitten and weighs 2 pounds.
Fill out an application at espanolahumane.org.
The Horse Shelter: Gaho is a 7-year-old, dark-brown mustang mare who has turned into a little gem.
She has worked with several volunteers and is very consistent in her behaviors. With a little bit
of boundaries, Gaho is a respectful partner. She is very good at groundwork and loads into a trailer.
Gaho is a very easy keeper but cannot be ridden.
She would make a great, very low maintenance companion horse. The adoption fee is $250.
Gaho and many other horses are available for adoption or sponsorship at The Horse Shelter in Cerrillos. Call 505-577-2193 for more information, or visit thehorseshelter.org.
Feline & Friends: Tuxi is shy but will settle into a new home quite easily. He doesn’t like some male cats but gets along with females. Tuxi is about 2½ years old and is FI-positive.
Raymond and his four siblings are adorable kittens, well socialized and very energetic. They get along great with other cats. Ideally, they will be adopted in pairs or into homes with another cat for companionship. They can be seen at the adoption center in Petco.
Mara Brenner with her dog, Kona, an Australian cattle dog.
Sandra Jaramillo Rescue Report