FAQs

What is the mission of the Animal Shelter?

The Animal Shelter is on a mission to change lives by connecting pets and people.


Are you a No-Kill Shelter?

The Animal Shelter of Wood River Valley is a “no-kill” shelter, which means that we will never euthanize an animal due to time or space constraints. We are dedicated to preventing animal suffering and cruelty, to adopting safe animals out to the community, and to providing quality care for every animal entrusted to us.

Euthanasia for health concerns is only considered when our veterinarian determines that the animal is too sick or injured to recover to a life of quality and is suffering with a poor prognosis, protracted painful recovery, or incurable disease/illness. Euthanasia for behavioral concerns is only considered when dogs have demonstrated serious aggressive behavior, including a bite history. Dogs that display shyness, minor aggression or resource guarding, and other treatable behavior issues will be put on a behavior plan by our certified trainer and worked with by trained staff and volunteers to ensure the dog is safe to be adopted into a home.

Euthanasia is one of the hardest decisions that has to be made by Shelter staff and is only made after careful consideration of the animal, its circumstances, and prognosis for recovery or rehabilitation. These determinations are made by an experienced team of animal care professionals who consult with each other to determine and document a course of action.

Most reputable animal welfare organizations cite a save rate of 90% or more as the benchmark to be a “no-kill” shelter. The Animal Shelter of Wood River Valley annually saves 96-98% of the animals that come through our doors. We are dedicated to continuing this achievement, saving as many lives as possible and providing safe, loving animals to be adopted by families.

See below for reference links if you’re interested in learning more about the no-kill movement:

"Defining No Kill: Understanding What No Kill Really Means” from PAWS Chicago

"What is no-kill?" from Maddie's Fund

"No-Kill Animal Shelters" from Best Friends


How do I adopt an animal?

Thank you for choosing adoption! At the Animal Shelter we do our very best to help match you with a pet to best fit your lifestyle. Click here to view our adoption policies & information. Have questions about a specific animal? Give us a call at 208-788-4351 and an adoption counselor can answer any questions you may have!


Why does your shelter not allow people to foster any of your animals or bring animals home for a weekend?

Our foster program is designed to provide temporary homes for our animals with special needs. These may include dogs on training programs that are not effective in a shelter, animals with medical needs that require care throughout the day and/or night, or simply animals unable to handle the stressful environment of a shelter. In other words, the program is not set up to provide temporary pets for people, but rather to provide animals in need of reprieve or more intense care than what we can provide within our shelter. We also like all of our healthy, adoptable dogs here with us at the shelter so they don't miss an opportunity for their forever home. If animals are all out in foster it makes it difficult for potential adopters to meet them and fall in love.


Why don't you take out of county animals in as strays but you take transferred animals from around the state and region?

We have municipal contracts and act as the impound facility for all of the cities in Blaine County. This allows us to temporarily hold stray animals while sharing in that cost with each of the individual cities and not carrying the entire cost ourselves.. We work with other shelters and coalition partners to transfer in animals on a "space available" program that allows us to manage our own population and not be at risk for over crowding. This gives high-kill shelters the opportunity to transfer healthy, adoptable pets that would otherwise be euthanized due to lack of space.