An Independent Monthly Newsmagazine Serving the Community since 1989


Animal Hotline is a nonprofit community service for lost/found pets in Placitas and Bernalillo
P. O. B. 812, Placitas, NM 87043
To report a lost or found animal, Call Dave Harper at 867-6135 or e-mail




Kittens: The two adorable formerly feral but now indoor kittens (pictured left) have become extremely affectionate. This male orange tabby and female white Himalayan have been rescued from the owls and coyotes and need a good home. They just got their shots and are in excellent health. Please call Joyce at 771-8207 if you are interested.





Dog: Miniature schnauzer lost from La Mesa the first week in July. Male, grey-and- white, very friendly.

Cat: Long-haired grey female cat, "Dusty," disappeared June 30 from La Mesa.

Dog: Purebred French bulldog (pictured on left), 21 pounds, brindled, with blue collar and tags, Very people-friendly. Gone since July 3 from La Mesa.

Cat: One-year-old female, black-and-grey tabby, "Echo," with golden eyes. Lost from Camino de San Francisco on July 11.

Dog: Little Border collie lost from La Mesa on July 26. Female, brown-and-white, named "Cassie," got spooked by the thunder.

Cat: Large (20lbs.) male, pale orange tabby with green collar, tags, and a chip. Lost from La Mesa on about July 22.

Dog: Small white female, Maltese/Shitzu. Lost from Vista de la Montana. Very friendly. Got out on July 29.


Cat: Large, black-and-white cat found in Placitas Trails in mid-July. #1360

Dog: Shaggy white male with orange on his back. Medium size, skinny, very good-natured. Found in Placitas Trails. Has since wandered off.

Cat: Grey tabby cat showed up south of the village of Placitas. Medium-size house cat that had recent vet attention. #1366


Raid on Placitas Animal Rescue comes up empty

Dave Harper

"The shelter is the only thing that got closed down. The case is still under appeal. We only closed to abide by the order. If the judge rules in our favor, the shelter will immediately reopen.” —Gary Miles, head of Placitas Animal Rescue.

Six to eight animal-control vehicles, along with the Sandoval County Sheriff's Department, massed at the Placitas Fire Station early Monday, July 22, for what could only be described as a raid on Placitas Animal Rescue. Also present were county attorney David Mathews, senior county planner Brad Stebleton, and animal-control officer George Griego.

But upon arrival at the shelter in northern Placitas, the county officials found that Placitas Animal Rescue had removed all the animals from the property in order to comply with a judicial order to close the shelter. Gary had received word of the order and the subsequent plans to execute it at just 8:00 p.m. on Sunday night.

Gary, along with a group of about fifteen volunteers worked through the night to place the fifty to seventy dogs that the county would have seized and taken . . . to where? Placitas Animal Rescue also had help from a Colorado nonprofit called the Dumb Friends League, who came all the way from Denver to help place eleven dogs.

The county had apparently constructed a shelter to house the animals that had already left. The county has lacked an animal shelter until now, so perhaps this new place (location unknown) will become a permanent facility.

It is unfortunate that Placitas has lost such a valuable and functional resource for all of our pets. Perhaps the Sandoval County Commission should have worked more diligently to provide a substitute for PAR before shutting down the much-needed shelter.

Unfortunately, our county only has one animal-control officer for the entire county. A recent report by a Placitas resident about stray dogs running around the village received an apology saying that the county does not have the resources to deal with the problem: lost animals picked up by the county will go to the pound in Albuquerque.

Gary Miles has no plans to quit rescuing animals, but he said, “We need "foster homes for the future animals—lost, dumped, and strayed. There's nothing available in Sandoval County."

At this point, all that has been lost is the place to hold animals. Gary emphasizes that PAR is still focusing on spay/neuter. The nonprofit organization has shuttled 119 animals for spay or neuter so far this year. They still need donations in order to keep the unwanted pet population down and will be looking for a second van for spay/ neuter shuttling. Donations are welcome at Placitas Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 724, Placitas, NM 87043.

Sandoval County has been trying to shut down the PAR shelter for years. The only adjoining property owner who had a problem with the shelter owns forty acres of undeveloped land and lives in Maryland.

Sandoval County's problem with the shelter is strictly a zoning issue. The animal-rescue facility claims to have existed prior to the adoption of zoning in Placitas in 1990. In spite of a thousand signatures in favor of the animal rescue and twenty to forty affidavits swearing under penalty of perjury that the shelter existed prior to the zoning ordinance, as well as a recommendation by the Sandoval County Planning and Zoning Commission to allow the shelter to operate, the Sandoval County Commission has denied zoning to allow the existence of the shelter.

Zoning is supposed to be a community issue. Many people believe that the actions of the county are strictly a vendetta against a person who has been an outspoken critic of county actions, and could be very well summed up in the words spoken by a county commissioner to Mr. Miles at a recent commission meeting: "If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all."






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