Animals are Affected by Climate Catastrophes Too!
Fortunately, animal groups come to the rescue
By Berit Mason
Hurricane Ida landed in Port Fourchon, Louisiana, on Sunday, August 29th, bringing high winds, storm surges, and tremendous amounts of flooding and power outages. Most of watched in awe at the video of Hurricane Ida hitting coastal Louisiana. Victims were left with flooded cars, and wrecked houses, before it moved on to drench New York, claiming lives there.
Hurricane season doesn’t end until November 30, so who knows what else is on the way.
What you might not see in the news coverage are all of the lost animals, separated from their owners during the storm.
Team members with the San Antonio Humane Society (SAHS) have been working to help those Gulf coast animals.
“The San Antonio Humane Society has been busy, helping fellow shelters in Louisiana deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Ida,” says Mikela Persson, with the SAHS.
“The SAHS team drove and met the Houston SPCA team halfway to transport the dogs back to our shelter.”
Like a game of tag, the Louisiana shelter animals were given to the Houston animal shelters, who then gave them to the San Antonio shelter.
“SAHS staff and volunteers helped set up the areas that house the pets, as well as assisting with the unloading, bathing, and other tasks needed to make them feel comfortable and safe,” she says.
Hurricane Ida was one of the most powerful storms to hit the country, so shelters in the strike zone lost water and electricity, leaving animals in those shelters severely traumatized. Naturally, pets and owners were also separated in the chaos.
“By relocating shelter pets from areas at high risk for damage, we are both bringing those animals to safety and freeing up much-needed space and resources for displaced pets after the storm,” explains SAHS President/CEO Nancy F. May.
Animal rescue groups from around the country rushed in to assist locals, helping with animal search and rescue and emergency sheltering.
Animal shelters in upper Florida were emptied to welcome pets from Louisiana, some of those Floridian shelters flying their dogs to California, to shelters there.
It was a relay race, all over the country!
In animal rescue, a big job after a climate catastrophe is to reunite pets and owners, so that is why microchipping a pet is so important.
Those Louisiana pets collected by the SAHS have remained here to be adopted.
“Every year, the SAHS shelters medically treat and rehabilitate thousands of animals. Many are injured, abused, surrendered by their owners, or found as strays. All pets remain in our care until adopted. Our mission is to protect and improve the lives of dogs and cats by providing shelter, care, adoption, rescue, spay and neuter programs, and community education,” says May.
The organization is in need of donations of dog/cat beds, paper towels, pet toys, treats, rubbing alcohol, and bottled water. But it’s best to call them first to ensure those items are still needed.
The San Antonio Humane Society (SAHS) is a local nonprofit, no-kill organization that has served Bexar County and its surrounding areas since 1952 but is not affiliated with the Humane Society of the United States.
Check out their website: SAhumane.org.
Until next month,