K9 Carts helps give disabled shelter pets a second chance at life

Some disabled rescue pets are getting a helping ‘paw’ thanks to an organization providing those without limbs or with spinal injuries with custom-made wheelchairs.

Even some local animals at the City of Albuquerque’s Animal Welfare shelters are getting the extra help getting around with the help of K9 Carts, wheeling into a forever home and a new life.

“We already do so much for the community of animals, but I knew we could do more. We have a need, sometimes, when the animals come in, whether they’re hit by a car, disabled, injury, anything like that,” vet tech Jenn Swaney said. “They’re helping people all over the country. I stumbled through my volunteer work of people who have previously worked with them.”

K9 Carts has been able to help a number of pets that have come into Albuquerque’s shelters, whether they have a disability, spinal injury or something else. In addition to dogs, K9 Carts has also created custom wheelchairs for other pets like cats, guinea pigs and even chickens.

“It really puts them back out there with every other dog that’s running around in the dog park,” said Swaney. “You can tell that they just truly just have another pep in their step. It’s really giving them a new zest for life.”

These custom wheelchairs can cost several hundred dollars, but without them, many of these pets would be put to sleep.

“I think pets are expensive, in general, and when you have this added equipment to it, that can be expensive as well,” said Swaney. “They can be several hundred dollars. So on top of the adoption fee and follow-up care, it’s just one more tool we can help ensure the animals get a forever home.”

The shelter relies on donations to get pets into these wheelchairs and works closely with Kennel Kompadres to make that happen.

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