There's an extra step volunteers and employees of Jefferson County Animal Control must perform, in addition to cleaning kennels and feeding dogs: breaking ice out of buckets each morning, so the dogs have water to drink, instead of licking an ice cube.
"That's how it is when it's 5 degrees out there, their entire bowl freezes," Three River Humane Society Executive Director Stephen Drynan saidThursday.
Right now the dogs are sheltered in outdoor kennels -- a harsh reality, when it's bitterly cold and the harshest parts of winter are still ahead.
"They do get cold, and we will be bringing in some of the smaller dogs at night," Drynan said.
But soon cold pups will be warmed, and soon the shelter will be called the Three Rivers Humane Society.
A new name, new management -- and a new buzz, literally.
"We got our last $4,000 for our 'Heat the House Project,' a project to bring electricity to the kennels, so we can have heated dog beds and heated water bowls," Drynan said.
As the new executive director, Drynan hopes to take the shelter in a new direction -- the main goal, getting more dogs adopted.
"A new business plan, No. 1, of marketing the animals and getting them out there," he said.
Long term, it's all about getting all the pups out of the weather for good.
"Our ultimate goal will be to have a new building," he said.
But for now, eliminating 'pupsicles' and Popsicles is a good first step.
Drynan said the electricity should be installed at the facility within the next couple of weeks.
During that time, the shelter will be closed until Dec. 6th.
The new 'Three Rivers Humane Society' will have a grand opening party on Saturday, Dec. 7th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
You can come tour the shelter, get pet photos with Santa and enjoy refreshments.
Bottle and can donations will also be accepted.