Mr. Garcia carrying his prized possession, Heidi, through the rising floodwaters, making sure her head stayed dry, and lifting her to safety on a volunteer’s fishing boat.
In the wake of this natural disaster, the sense of loss, and sadness, can be felt all across the country. And while we sit here in the warm California sun, Houstonians—and their pets—are witnessing one of the worst hurricanes to hit the country since Katrina.
As a pets magazine, we felt it was of utmost importance to share how we can help the countless pets (and owners) that are stranded, trapped, and displaced in Houston.
1. The SPCA stated in a press release that they are “encouraging the public to NOT donate tangible items. From our past experience with Hurricane Katrina, the immediate need for animal disaster assistance is monetary donations. This allows affected shelters to purchase the items they need without having to sort through and store thousands of donated items.” The average cost to shelter and care for one pet is $600 but the gift/donation can be anything you are capable of giving—even a dollar helps the cause. Click here to donate to the Houston SPCA.
2. If you are an animal welfare professional and want to volunteer your skills, you can also submit this online form. “Volunteer information will be shared directly with Houston SPCA and SPCA of Texas so they can contact you if they require your assistance.”
3. And if you still feel the need to donate tangible items, the OC Veterinary Medical Center in Orange is accepting donations of new dog collars, leashes, harnesses, dog beds, cat beds, blankets, sherpa type carriers, toys, and national chain pet store gift cards (food is very heavy to ship). They will ship the items to the San Antonio branch of the Red Cross who will make sure they are given out to the people who need them most.
Whether you’re a dog, cat, cow, bird, or reptile lover, this is the time to come together as pet parents and help the animals that we hold dear, and please remember that being in California does not exempt us from natural disasters. We are well overdue for an earthquake and it’s of vital importance to prepare emergency kits not only for ourselves but for our pets as well.
Click here to find out how you can put your own emergency preparedness kit together and here to find out how you can learn Pet CPR/First Aid. SoCal Animal Response is also a great contact to have on hand as they provide temporary animal shelter and support as well as animal evacuation classes. Let’s be safe rather than sorry, Petsguiders.