Following is information regarding leaving dogs in show site buildings overnight. This information applies to Creative Arts, Manuel Lujan Complex and Youth Hall buildings.

  • Dogs are allowed in buildings overnight.
  • All buildings are locked from 10pm MDT until 6am MDT. The only people allowed in buildings during that time are show officials (i.e., properly authorized fairground employees and contractors, show chairs, assistant show chairs and hospitality chairs). Other individuals must be escorted at all times by show officials. Security personnel are NOT allowed to act as escorts.
  • Rio Grande Kennel Club and Coronado Kennel Club pay for additional internal security required to effectively enact the above changes.
  • A show chair or assistant show chair stays on site and is on call at all times to promptly provide assistance for any safety/security incident (this is not a change but provided as relevant information).

Following are additional answers to “frequently asked questions” to dispel misinformation disseminated.

In 2016, the fairground initially imposed a change preventing dogs from being left in buildings overnight? Why did they change their position?
The fairground has a long standing security policy preventing fully enclosed buildings from being occupied by people or animals from 10pm to 6am. Until recently, that policy was not strictly enforced. The Cluster was NOT being singled out. This was a SAFETY issue more than a risk management issue. If carrying additional insurance would have resolved the issue, the Cluster would have done it. However, even if the Cluster carried additional insurance, it would not have eliminated safety concerns nor insulated the fairground from litigation and loss. We agreed to add inside security for the buildings and the fairground agreed to allow dogs to stay in buildings overnight subject to the above conditions.

Can dogs be left unattended in a vehicle on the fairground?
Yes. The fairground is under state jurisdiction and under state statute dogs can be left unattended in a vehicle as long as it is properly ventilated. As important, dogs left in a vehicle on the fairground are also subject to a longstanding Cluster policy as stated in the premium list: “Action can and will be taken to rescue any dog confined to an overheated vehicle. All vehicle owners on the show premises automatically waive their rights to legal action or damages regarding dogs confined to improperly vented vehicles. The Rio Grande Kennel Club, Inc. and the Coronado Kennel Club of New Mexico, Inc. regard the health, safety and life of any dog on the show grounds to be paramount to other property or privacy rights. We will not page anyone to a vehicle; we will take action.”

Can dogs be left unattended in a vehicle within the city of Albuquerque?
Yes. Section 9-2-2-6 3B of the Albuquerque ordinance clearly states: “Animals left unattended in cars, vans or RVs must have adequate ventilation to prevent the temperature in the vehicle from rising high enough such that any reasonable person would know that the Animal would suffer from heat exposure.” The complete text of the vehicle transport section of the Albuquerque ordinance is provided below. Additional copies will be available at the superintendent’s table during the Cluster.

In the event my dog is taken to a shelter within the city of Albuquerque, will it be sterilized?
Albuquerque’s sterilization ordinance ONLY applies to dogs owned by residents of Albuquerque, Bernalillo County or counties contiguous to Bernalillo County. With some exceptions, sterilization is strictly applied to dogs owned by Albuquerque residents. With some exceptions, it is also applied to dogs owned by Bernalillo county residents and residents of Bernalillo county’s contiguous counties when a dog owned by those residents goes to a public or private animal shelter within the City of Albuquerque. The complete text of the sterilization section of the Albuquerque ordinance as it pertains to non-residents of Albuquerque is provided below. Additional copies will be available at the superintendent’s table during the Cluster.

Of course, we are concerned about any show dog going to any shelter in any city. “Processing” mistakes and premature sterilization decisions occur with alarming frequency. You should always be vigilant to assure your dogs don’t end up in any shelter.

Excerpts from the City of Albuquerque’s
Humane And Ethical Animal Rules And Treatment Ordinance

§ 9-2-2-3(C) Required Alteration of Companion Animals.

No Companion Animal owned by a person who lives in Bernalillo County or the surrounding counties of Valencia, Sandoval, Cibola, Santa Fe and Torrance shall leave any Animal Shelter including AACC (Albuquerque Animal Care Center) without having been Altered except as provided herein. The foregoing does not apply to a permitted Intact Animal which is not required to be Altered until Impounded twice at AACC or to an Animal whose Alteration would be dangerous due to age or health issues. This provision does not apply to Boarding Kennels and Guard Dog Sites. Intact Animals at Guard Dog Sites must have Intact Animal Permits.


When transporting Animals they must be kept safe.

(A) Pickup Trucks. Animals that are transported in the bed of a pickup truck must be humanely restrained or Crated to prevent the possibility of the Animal falling out, protected from extreme temperatures and provided with a non-metal surface to sit or stand on.

(1) Humanely restrained. The Animal must be attached to the truck by means of a Harness, not a neck collar, in a way to insure that the animal cannot jump out of or fall from the truck or be strangled. There must be two fixed point fastening locations at least two feet apart to attach the harness to in order to prevent the Animal from strangling or falling out.

(2) Crate. If an Animal is put in a Crate or other enclosure, the Crate or enclosure must be securely fastened to the bed or sides of the truck so that the Crate or enclosure cannot turn over or fall out.

(3) Protection from weather. No Animal shall be left in the bed of a truck whether in a Crate or not when the weather is such that the Animal will be exposed to extreme heat, cold or rain.

(B) Cars, Vans and RVs. Animals riding inside vehicles that are not in Crates or other enclosures must not be allowed access to a window opened wide enough for the Animal to jump, fly or fall out. Animals left unattended in cars, vans or RVs must have adequate ventilation to prevent the temperature in the vehicle from rising high enough such that any reasonable Person would know that the Animal would suffer from heat exposure. During the warmer months, no amount of ventilation will keep the car from getting too hot. If the Mayor determines that an Animal in a vehicle is in immediate danger, the Mayor may enter the vehicle by whatever means necessary, without being liable to the owner of the vehicle, and seize the Animal.

(C) Transporting more than one Animal. In addition to all other regulations in this article, Animals should never be overcrowded when being transported. If the Animals are Crated or kept in any enclosure, they may be allowed to share a Crate but each Animal should be able to stand up, move around, lie down and stretch out naturally. If Crates or enclosures are stacked, they must be attached securely to prevent the Crates or enclosures from falling or turning over. If Crates or other enclosures are stacked, it is important that no urine or feces are passed between Crates and enclosures.