Alberta animal rescue organization opens first Edmonton facility

Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society (AARCS) has opened a new animal shelter in southeast Edmonton.

The organization leased a 10,000 square-foot space on Coronet Road more than a year ago, finally opening in January.

“We’re so excited this is finally here,” said AARCS operations manager Jamey Blair.

“We feel pretty blessed to be open and part of the Edmonton community.”

Late Friday, 44 puppies and dogs arrived at the new AARCS facility — their biggest intake so far.

“Often a lot of these dogs are outside, exposed to the elements, so you can see things like frostbite and overall just being outside in this weather is just very hard on them,” Blair explained.

“Most of them were just scared. We have some that are a little malnutritioned. We did get one that was injured — hit by a car, but she’s doing well,” volunteer Tawny Michael said.

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The animal welfare organization is based in Calgary. In Edmonton, it’s been strictly foster-based for the last five years.

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Blair said this new facility is critical when it comes to helping animals from areas further north.

“The drive for some of these animals is very long,” Blair said. “Having a safe space where volunteers can go out at a moment’s notice, rescue the animals, and us provide temporary care for them until we can get them into foster homes, has been remarkable.”

“A lot of times they would have to still keep driving to make it to Calgary, so it’s nice to have that stop in between,” Michael explained.

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The dogs will continue on to Calgary this weekend where, once cleared by the vet, they will be ready for foster homes.

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Blair said since opening, they’ve helped roughly 250 animals.

“We’ll be able to help so many more animals because of a facility like this, and hopefully find many more homes too,” she added.

AARCS is looking for more volunteers.

For more information on adoptable animals and how to donate to the rescue organization, head to the website.

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