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They Fought for the Law—and They Won

New legislation in New Mexico addresses shelter standards and euthanasia licensing

New legislation in New Mexico addresses shelter standards and euthanasia licensing

Last year, Animal Protection of New Mexico (APNM), a nonprofit advocacy organization based in Albuquerque, got an alarming call from a landfill: An employee had opened a bag from a local shelter to find a live Doberman inside.

The shelter’s staff were “horrified” when they heard the news, says Heather Greenhood, APNM’s legislative director. “They would have never wanted to do that,” she says. “But the sad reality was that animal control officers were hired and then handed a syringe and [told], ‘Good luck to ya.’ ”

Those officers and many of their colleagues around the state want more training—something APNM has tried to provide. The group has devoted $100,000 to helping New Mexico shelters over the last few years; some of the money has paid for training workshops conducted by the National Animal Control Association and other organizations. “But we realized that we shouldn’t be spending $100,000 of our nonprofit money,” says Greenhood. “The state should.”

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