Changes Ahead in 2021

 In News

The Garfield County Sheriff—s department has ended their animal control program.  As of January 1st, Colorado Animal Rescue (C.A.R.E.) and the Rifle Animal Shelter  will lose the support of our county animal control officers in caring for stray pets. As part of this budget cut, our shelter will no longer receive per animal payment for stray or homeless pets arriving from unincorporated Garfield County. Although decreased, we continue to receive funding from the Garfield County Board of Commissioners and we will continue to serve all community pets to our best ability.  

The Sheriff—s department press release includes more information about their decision:

Retired Animal Control Vehicles

What does this mean for our shelter? What does this mean for stray pets?

  • Stray and/or homeless pets from all of Garfield County remain welcome at C.A.R.E.
  • Stray and homeless pets will continue to receive the same love and attention. We—ll work to reunite them with their owner or find a new loving home. 
  • C.A.R.E. will NOT be able to assist in capturing or transporting stray pets.
  • Citizens may transport stray animals to the shelter during normal business hours or otherwise by appointment. 
  • Please call 970-947-9173 to notify us of any stray or homeless pet that you intend to bring to the shelter so that we are fully prepared.
  • There is no charge for bringing a stray animal to our shelter.
  • C.A.R.E. will keep lost pet reports and track licensing to assist in locating an owner.
  • C.A.R.E. will house any stray pet for a minimum of 5 days while looking for an owner.
  • If an owner is located, a $30 per day boarding fee will help cover the cost of intake vaccinations. 
  • Every stray pet will receive a free i.d. tag or microchip if elected. 
  • If an owner is not found and the animal is eligible for adoption, C.A.R.E. will seek a new home for the pet.
Wallaby - Adopted 2020

What to do if you find a stray pet:

  • Stay safe!  Only approach an animal if you are 100% comfortable with their behavior.
  • If you can—t approach the animal, take a picture, make note of location, and contact C.A.R.E to share the information.
  • In the case of a friendly animal, check closely for i.d. and contact the owner directly if able.
  • If found within city limits, contact the municipal police department. They may be able to connect the pet to their owner or transport them to an appropriate shelter. 
  • If outside city limits, call C.A.R.E. 970-947-9173 or Rifle Animal Shelter 970-625-8808.
  • If a stray animal is found after shelter operating hours and a municipal police department is not able to help, citizens will now be faced with either holding the animal or leaving it where found. Please leave a voicemail with C.A.R.E. so we can respond as quickly as possible.
  • County dispatch remains a resource for questions about city boundaries or requests for emergency assistance. 970-625-8095

How can you help?

  • We encourage all pet owners to keep their pet—s i.d. tags and collars updated with current contact information.
  • Adopt from your local shelter! 

C.A.R.E. is committed to working through this transition process with our community.  We are thankful for your support and resilience.  We are confident that with your help, our community—s pets will remain in safe hands. 

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