Dumb Friends League spending $40 million to upgrade Quebec Street shelter

DENVER — The Dumb Friends League is spending $40 million to upgrade its Quebec Street shelter in Denver.

“The ‘Building a Better Way Home’ project will upgrade the oldest and most heavily used areas of the facility, along with enhancing other critical parts of the shelter,” officials said in a statement Thursday.

The shelter was a state-of-the-art facility when it was completed in 1974, and has undergone multiple additions and updates, but it “no longer fulfills the needs of today’s animals,” officials said.

Bob Rohde, president and CEO of the Dumb Friends League, said the new improvements will “make a life-changing difference for an additional 60,000 homeless pets.”

Some highlights of the renovation project include major renovations to the Veterinary Services department.

A new, larger, medical area will nearly double the shelter’s capacity to perform surgical procedures that will reduce the time pets have to spend in the shelter, according to officials.

The project also includes a new dog adoptions and transition area.

“Dogs will have the luxury of natural light and improved sound control, reducing the dogs’ stress levels and helping them become better candidates for adoption,” officials said.

A new area for the shelter’s behavior department is also a part of the project, allowing cats and dogs with behavior challenges a separate, calm area so they can learn to trust again and participate in behavior programs.

Separate lobbies for cats and dogs will also be built. The project should take about three years to complete.

A $20 million matching gift from Leslie and John Malone and The Malone Family Foundation is making the project go forward.