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Pilot Program for Dogs and Cats on ABQ RIDE Buses Begins July 1st

City Council-Sponsored Program to Last through Dec. 31, 2016

Starting July 1, 2016, you can bring dogs and cats onto ABQ RIDE buses, but only under certain conditions.  It’s an Albuquerque City Council pilot program that runs until the end of the year.

It allows passengers to take one dog or cat onto fixed route buses or Sun Vans during off-peak hours, which includes weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and after 6:30 p.m., and anytime on Saturday and Sunday. No additional fare is needed for that dog or cat.

“The program is primarily intended to help people with limited incomes and who don’t have affordable transportation to get their dogs or cats to the vet,” said Trudy Jones, the Albuquerque City Councilor who sponsored the program.

The pilot program sets the following restrictions:

  • Cats must be in a carrying case. Dogs can be in a carrying case or on a leash and muzzled. No dog or cat will be allowed on the bus without one of these restraints.
  • Dogs without a crate should be riding on the lap of a passenger or seated under the seat or at a passenger’s feet. The crates themselves must be of a size that can reasonably accommodate the dog or cat and can be carried by the passenger without assistance.
  • Dogs or cats must be under the control of passengers at all times. Passengers are required to clean up after them, too.
  • Bus drivers may refuse admission if a dog or cat is not clean, appears vicious or likely to annoy, threaten or inconvenience other passengers and their dogs or cats.  Drivers also may refuse admission to dogs or cats if there is insufficient space on the bus due to heavy ridership.
  • A passenger not complying with any of these restrictions may be suspended, along with their cat or dog from ABQ RIDE service.

“At the end of the year, ABQ RIDE will get input about the program from riders, drivers and residents,” said Bruce Rizzieri, Director of ABQ RIDE. “We’ll then determine if the project should be continued.”