Austin Pets Alive! asks people to foster dogs Feb. 1 due to power outage

Austin Pets Alive! is asking for help after their power and internet service went out on Thursday, Feb. 1 due to wintry weather.

The nonprofit animal shelter says they do have water and generators are running in critical areas.

With some of the animal enclosures exposed to the elements, temperatures this low severely strain the shelter’s facility, so they are asking the community for help. 

Austin Pets Alive! is asking for people to pick up dogs today to foster in homes, away from resident dogs, until Friday.

If you are available to foster a dog or cat, you must fill out a form found on

Austin Pets Alive! has five quick tips to keep your cats or dogs safe during the winter weather:

  • Bring pets inside. The best thing you can do for your pet is to bring them inside with you. While some breeds of dogs are more tolerant of cold weather than others, no pet should be left outside for long periods of time when it is below freezing (32ºF). You know your pet best, so be vigilant about watching for signs of their cold tolerance and limit outdoor activities accordingly.
  • Check your car for cats. Our feline friends like to hide from this weather in car engines and/or wheel wells, so thump the hood of your car a few times and check your wheels for stowaways before you start the engine and take off.
  • Provide a makeshift enclosure for outdoor animals. If you’ve noticed outdoor cats or other animals in your community suffering from the cold (shaking, curled up, etc.) and you are worried about them, create a makeshift shelter for them to stay warm. A closed box or Rubbermaid bin with a cut out in the side, with STRAW inside (not hay and not blankets), will help keep them safe in the frigid temperatures.
  • Put a sweater on your pup. If you have a dog with a short coat, you can keep them a bit more insulated on walks by putting a sweater or dog coat on them. Be sure the sweater and coat is completely dry for each outing, though, as damp or wet outerwear could actually make them chillier.
  • Check paws. After outdoor activity, check your pet’s paws for any signs of cracking on the paw pads, redness between toes, or bleeding. Wipe them down after each outing, too, to remove any salt, ice, or chemicals.

If you need help with a community pet, please visit the P.A.S.S. Facebook group. P.A.S.S.(which stands for Positive Alternatives to Shelter Surrender) connects people to community member support for emergency pet food, pet resource assistance, and other emergency pet help.