Idaho shelter’s innovative program helps dogs find fur-ever homes

Behind the Business: Mountain Humane
Published: Jul. 7, 2021 at 4:59 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — One Blaine County Animal Shelter has an innovative program to help dogs find potential adopters, all while getting some much-needed exercise along the way.

Mountain Humane on Croy Creek Road in Hailey is a no-kill animal shelter.

“Right now, we do have about 105 dogs and cats,” said Mountain Humane Volunteer Coordinator Kelsey Strahle. “We do just house dogs, cats and pocket pets.”

One of the shelter’s most popular and innovative programs is Hikin’ Buddies. The program, which has been around for 20 years, allows for shelter dogs to be taken on a hike by the public at Adam’s Gulch Trailhead in Blaine County. It takes place on Wednesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

This program was not held last year due to COVID-19, but the staff is happy to see it come back, especially when they see the happy faces of the dogs post-hike.

“It’s really special because it’s a great way for dogs to get out and get exposure to potential adopters,” said Strahle.

The dogs benefit by getting exposure to a typical hiking experience outdoors, not to mention much-needed exercise. Staff members have also seen bonds between dogs and people, which has led to adoptions.

“I think it definitely helps set them up for success when they go to their forever home,” said Strahle.

This year’s program was originally planned to end on July 14., but it has now been extended until August 4.

If you’re not looking to adopt a pet, you can still walk a dog. In fact, the shelter encourages anyone to stop by and take one of their dogs for a walk on the trails.

“It’s just a great way to experience nature and give a shelter dog some exercise,” said Strahle.

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