Canyon County

‘Christmas spirit’ brings beds, blankets and propane to keep Caldwell shelter dogs warm

Zamzows executive team members delivered 94 pet beds to the West Valley Humane Society shelter Wednesday, part of a flurry of donations to keep shelter dogs warm after the shelter’s boiler stopped working over the weekend.
Zamzows executive team members delivered 94 pet beds to the West Valley Humane Society shelter Wednesday, part of a flurry of donations to keep shelter dogs warm after the shelter’s boiler stopped working over the weekend.

Canyon County’s West Valley Humane Society shelter won’t have a boiler to heat its kennels until January, but the approximately 60 dogs now held there will be snug and warm in the meantime, thanks to an outpouring of community and corporate generosity.

“We can’t believe how many people have brought in blankets and sweaters,” shelter spokeswoman Angela Taylor said Wednesday, estimating well over 100 donations ranging from an item or two to “giant garbage bags full.”

And then there are the many businesses that stepped up, from the Caldwell Wal-Mart’s blanket donation to a Wednesday truckload of dog beds from Zamzows — 94 beds, enough to equip all the kennels.

Other businesses, including Tates Rents and Root Rents, provided heaters to the shelter, and Complete Restoration donated a set of three electric heaters.

The biggest gift, Taylor said, came from Valley Wide Cooperative, which provided commercial-grade heaters plus two 500-gallon propane tanks that will be refilled free of charge.

“That’s no small thing,” she said of the refills. “They’re being awesome. They’re even letting us keep the tanks and the heaters” after the new boiler arrives so there’s a fall-back position next time there’s a heating emergency.

The boiler that provides radiant heat to kennel floors went out over the weekend, she said, and it will cost about $50,000 to replace. The humane society found that money by transferring it from other parts of the shelter’s budget, and monetary donations will go toward replenishing those funds, she said. The new boiler is being shipped from New York and won’t arrive in Caldwell until January.

The shelter’s GoFundMe page had raised nearly $10,000 by Wednesday evening. And Combs Car Corral is collecting donations for the shelter and will match up to $2,000 in contributions, Taylor said.

With temperatures expected to drop well below freezing by the weekend, the donated heaters, blankets and other tangible expressions of concern for animals will fill the shelter’s need and buoy the holiday mood of staff and volunteers, she said.

“It’s proof of the Christmas spirit,” Taylor said. “We’ve just been blown away.”

Reporter Erin Fenner contributed to this story.

Kristin Rodine: 208-377-6447

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