‘Check the dog out like a library book’: Winnipeg Animal Services offers doggie dates

The City’s of Winnipeg’s Animal Services department is looking for people to take their residents on “doggie dates” to help improve the quality of life for dogs at the overcrowded shelter and try help them find a forever home.

“It allows people to test drive the dog before adopting,” said Animal Services general manager Leland Gordon. “You can actually check the dog out like a library book, just for fun, and take it out in the community.”

Gordon was at The Forks Sunday afternoon on a doggie date with Fred the Husky, who was wearing a bright orange “adopt me” vest and receiving many pets from passers-by.

“We’re trying to find that dog a home,” said Gordon. “But residents in our community can do that too.”

He added anyone can put take out a dog for the day by leaving a deposit with the shelter. It’s a good way to see if the pet is a match and give the dogs some much-needed exercise time.

Gordon said the shelter is extremely over capacity right now, “Once we start getting up to like 30, 40, we have to make our cages smaller. We have more difficulty giving those dogs a great quality of life while they’re in our facility.”

He said it’s becoming a major problem. “We’re seeing more and more dogs ending up in animal services, more and more residents who want to get rid of their dogs.”

As well, Gordon says many of the dogs they get aren’t spayed or neutered, don’t have their proper vaccinations, and aren’t licensed.

“If people were more responsible, we’d see less dogs ending up in Animal Services,” said Gordon.

Animal Services is also looking for experienced owners to foster dogs for a week or longer. More information can be found online

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