Helping Hurricane Katrina's Animal Victims [Archive] - Honda Element Owners Club Forum

: Helping Hurricane Katrina's Animal Victims

hiker chick
09-04-2005, 08:41 AM
For those wanting to also help the animal victims of the hurricane (which also helps the animal owners), among the groups putting donations to good use are The Humane Society and Noah's Wish (sole mission to rescue animals). There is also a veterinary group whose link I'm going to hunt down now.

These needy pets have owners who care about them and who would benefit from knowing they are okay and being cared for. Breed groups are no doubt doing everything they can. The Samoyed groups are.

Among the Noah's Wish success stories so far is finding a chihuahua in a kitchen sink where it had been left by the flood waters. (

American Veterinary Medical Association has emergency care teams in the region helping pets and livestock.

The Humane Society has gotten the LA Governor's permission to go into the ravaged areas. ( orleans.html)
A stranded dog runs on a church rooftop in high water in New Orleans earlier this week. HSUS rescuers were expected to gain access to the city on Sunday morning. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images) ( orleans.html)

Last Updated:
September 3, 11:15 p.m.

In a frantic race against time, HSUS’s Disaster Animal Response Team gets set to rescue animals stranded in New Orleans. ( orleans.html)

Video: Our Disaster Call Center hears pleas for help from desperate pet caregivers.
• Windows Media ( • Real Video (

hiker chick
09-04-2005, 08:57 AM
More Than 130 Animals Rescued Last Night by HSUS Teams in Gulfport, Miss.!!!

JACKSON, Miss. and WASHINGTON – Late last night, rescuers with The Humane Society of the United States, working with The Humane Society of South Mississippi, picked up 42 cats and 89 dogs in Gulfport, Miss. and drove them to a staging area Jackson, Miss. There they are providing triage medical care and temporary shelter for the animals before arranging to transfer them to animal shelters around the country.

“We were finally allowed to enter hurricane-ravaged Gulfport last night,” said Wayne Pacelle, HSUS president and CEO, “where one of our rapid response strike teams was able to rescue a large group of animals. Another highly-trained HSUS animal disaster team is based in Louisiana, and is poised to enter New Orleans as soon as access is allowed. We believe it is imperative that we get into that devastated region as soon as possible to increase the chances that we can evacuate the thousands of animals who remain in dire circumstances.”


The HSUS been inundated with thousands of calls with requests to rescue pets who were left behind or perhaps denied entrance to the Superdome or other shelters. Individuals who learn of stranded pets are urged to call the HSUS phone bank at 1-800-HUMANE-1, provided they have location information that can be relayed to the teams in the field. Thousands of concerned citizens have also donated to the relief effort by visiting (

“The outpouring of concern from people around the country has been overwhelming,” said Pacelle. “They recognize that animals are suffering, too. Rescuing abandoned pets can offer some peace of mind to the people whose lives have been shattered by this disaster, and The Humane Society of the United States is determined to do everything we can to help.”

HSUS Mobilization

The HSUS mobilized rapidly in response to last week’s hurricane, issuing disaster preparedness information and activating its Disaster Animal Response Teams (DART) across the country. Trained disaster specialists based at the organization’s operations center in Gaithersburg, Md. headed to Florida early this week with equipment and supplies. HSUS is also poised to deploy hundreds of other individuals who have been through its disaster training programs. Days End Horse Rescue, which is based in Lisbon, Md., has also sent personnel and equipment to respond to the needs of horses.

Teams from animal shelters and HSUS offices across the country have been streaming into Mississippi and Louisiana rescuing animals and providing shelter for homeless pets. More than 50 staff members and volunteers are supporting the field team effort from the Gaithersburg, Md. headquarters, answering phones and responding to emails from 8:00 am-7:00 pm each day, taking in reports of missing and injured pets.

The Humane Society of the United States is the nation’s largest animal protection organization representing more than 9 million members and constituents. The non-profit organization is a mainstream voice for animals, with active programs in companion animals and equine protection, disaster preparedness and response, wildlife and habitat protection, animals in research and farm animal welfare. The HSUS protects all animals through education, investigation, litigation, legislation, advocacy, and field work. The group is based in Washington and has numerous field representatives across the country.

hiker chick
09-04-2005, 09:04 AM
I cannot imagine having to make the wrenching decision to leave Gidget (my Samoyed) on the rooftop so that I could be rescued by helicopter. She is my family.

I'd like to think I wouldn't leave her. But if for some reason, she were left alone in a disaster zone I would pray that there were rescuers for her, too. And that when she were found, she was cared for by vets and safely sheltered until we could be reunited.

That would mean more to me than anything. There are a lot of people suffering for worrying about their animals left behind in the hurricane ravaged zone.

They need our help, too.

09-04-2005, 11:28 AM
Thanks for all the info !! :)

I just sent in my donation and noticed that the "big boxes" around here (Petco, Petsmart) are also set up for donations at the register when you check out. Also a good reason to keep current ID tags on your favorite buddies collar at all times . . . An electronic ID chip implant isn't a bad idea either.

09-04-2005, 11:53 AM
I give monthly donations to the ASPCA and I also donate to the HSUS a few times a year! I am just glad that they are thinking of the animals as well!

09-04-2005, 02:16 PM
Thanks for the links and info. I work with trauma survivors that are people all the time - for what ever reason I can see the human losses and know how horrible they are, but they don't get to me in the same way that the stories about people being forced to leave their pets behind get to me. I cannot imagine losing everything, but managing to hang on to your pets, and then being forced to leave them behind when being evacuated. It just makes me nauseated to think about being faced with losing my two dogs, who are practically our kids (we don't have the human kind, nor do we plan to). I gave a donation to HSUS today.

09-04-2005, 02:17 PM
Just so you know I am not heartless toward people - I also gave to the Red Cross earlier this week. Wanted to clarify!

09-04-2005, 02:27 PM
I cannot imagine losing everything, but managing to hang on to your pets, and then being forced to leave them behind when being evacuated.
The argument I always hear is "resources taken by a pet are that much less less available for people". The short-sighted think that there is a quid pro quo.

You may have noted my post about this in the "other" thread. As an emergency manager, I feel the forced abandonment of pets by official evacuation "processors" is unconscionable. It just adds to the human misery, and further burdens the system by adding to the emotional toll. Given more than two minutes of thought, this can be a simple accommodation.

BTW, before we moved, we were volunteers at our local humane society.

09-04-2005, 02:48 PM
It rips my heart out also to see that these people managed to hang on to their pets and save them, and then they just have to leave them behind and desert them. I understand that it would be pure chaos to try to pack that many people and their pets in temporary living quarters such as the astro dome, but I think there has got to be another way. I love all my dogs, and wouldn't be able to stand the though of them having to be left running loose to fend for themselves, but aside from that there is such an emotional connection felt for pets that it's torture to force people to leave them......especially when they have lost so much already.

My poodle has been with me for 10 years now. She's been with me through all the ups and downs, and she is family to me. Just to imagine someone telling me to abandon her after all her years of faithful commitment would devastate me. It's so awful.

hiker chick
09-04-2005, 02:57 PM
Just so you know I am not heartless toward people - I also gave to the Red Cross earlier this week. Wanted to clarify!

You have a great heart! Same here, I gave to the Red Cross first. But close on the heels of that I sought out animal rescue groups. We help people when we help their animals!

The dog therapy group that Gidget and I visit pediatric patients through is going to be doing visits with hurricane evacuees who have been transported to DC. Dogs have a role in searching for and helping hurricane survivors, just as they did on 9/11.

09-06-2005, 10:32 AM
I gave to the Red Cross on the first night. Then I spotted my two dogs sleeping in thier nice comfy beds and knew that if they had thumbs and jobs with incomes they would give money to help out the Animals who where in need. So I gave equal amounts to the Humane Society and to on thier behalf.

There are groups going into the areas and looking for pets block by block, house by house. They need our financial support to feed the volunteers and for fuel and to purchase food for the animals and temporary shelters for the animals recused. Please give if you can.

I know if given the choice I could not leave my two dogs. I am thankful that I have the means to have the ability to leave the area in my Element. I cannot imagine how frustrating it is for those people who had to leave everything and simply walk (or swim) out to safety. I would be so angry at a government so unprepared for an emergency three days in the making. I can't imagine what reaction a terrorist attack would be like with a goverment that moves at a snails pace because our leaders are on vacation!

hiker chick
09-06-2005, 10:51 AM
:) Way to go, Joemama!

Today: September 06, 2005 at 8:45:56 PDT
Efforts Made to Reunite Boy and His Dog


NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Among the thousands of crushing moments from last week's deadly hurricane, one image brought the anguish home to many: a tearful little boy torn from his dog while being shuttled to safety.

It tugged at the heartstrings, prompting an outpouring from around the country of people on the hunt for both the boy and his dog Snowball in hopes of a reunion.

They've been scouring shelters, posting notes on the Internet and making phone calls to track them down. One woman set up a Web site to help people pair up pets with their owners. Another set up a reward to encourage someone to come forward with information on Snowball's or the boy's whereabouts.

"Everyone wants to know about Snowball," said Laura Maloney, executive director of the Louisiana Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

The boy was among the thousands sheltered at the Superdome after the hurricane. But when he went to board a bus to be evacuated to Houston, a police officer took the dog away. The boy cried out - "Snowball! Snowball!" - then vomited in distress. The confrontation was first reported by The Associated Press. Authorities say they don't know where the boy or his family ended up.

It was almost too much for Jean Jones to bear.

The 56-year-old woman from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., runs and launched another site,, to help pair Snowball and other lost pets with their owners. She also started a reward fund - which hit $1,775 as of Monday - hoping money might persuade people to help out.

Billie Sue Bruce, a 65-year-old retired teacher in Jonesville, Va., was the first to donate, giving $500. "The child has been through so much already," she said. "Then to just add to this emotional state is unforgivable."

Late Monday, there was a ray of hope. The United Animal Nations said Snowball was safe, citing news from the state veterinarian's office. However, the information could not be immediately verified. To complicate matters further, the group called Snowball a terrier mix, while others consider the dog a bichon frise.

If the boy and his dog are indeed safe, they have beaten long odds.

Many of the animals - dogs, cats, ferrets and birds - that police collected at the Superdome were herded into a stairwell until the human evacuation was complete. Of the 50 animals rescued from the Superdome on Sunday, not all of them survived.

In Texas, refugees unable to care for their dogs and cats are handing them over to animal shelters already crowded with animals evacuated before the hurricane.

At the Humane Society of North Texas in Fort Worth on Monday, Antoinette Simmons and Wilson Clark dropped off their 7-year-old shi tzu. Staying in a Fort Worth hotel, the couple is unsure when they will be able to take Princess back home.

More than 600 displaced pets remain in Houston. Hundreds more fill kennels and cages in Dallas and around the state. Shelters try to arrange foster homes for pets, and many families have volunteered.

"I've been doing this type of work for 26 years and I've never seen this type of outpouring," said SPCA of Texas president James Bias, who shuttled 30 cats in his van from Houston to Dallas last week.

In Mississippi, many pets were either left to fend for themselves in the powerful winds or trapped in flooding cages as owners fled. Others survived, only to die after days without food and water.

Seventeen dogs and six cats died at the Humane Society of South Mississippi shelter in Gulfport. About 125 survived, many of them dog-paddling for hours until the mix of mud and sewage receded.

The national Humane Society chapter came in Friday and retrieved the survivors, trucking them to shelters further north, said Julie Parks, the assistant director of the Gulfport facility.

"We had dogs that swam the entire time in 4 feet of water and survived," said Parks. "Even cats were in about 8 to 9 inches of water in the upper cages and they swam and survived, too. Just like everybody else, they're survivors."

Reuniting Snowball and his owner will require work, patience and luck.

Volunteers planned to make visits to shelters in the Houston area looking for the dog's owners. They were considering walking around carrying signs with Snowball's photo.

"I don't know how hopeful I am," Jones said. "They probably don't know anything about this - that there's a reward out there and we're trying to look for them."


hiker chick
09-07-2005, 07:55 PM
This is refreshing!

Today: September 07, 2005 at 17:42:6 PDT

Military Gets Creative for Evacuations



Deep in St. Bernard Parish, just south of New Orleans, a man stubbornly refused to leave his home, insisting he must stay with the only things he had left in the world - his two bulldogs and eight young puppies. And three friends wouldn't go anywhere without him.

So a Navy crew built a kennel at the nearby base and, with the dogs safely secured, finally persuaded the group to leave their homes. By Wednesday they were headed to a shelter in Texas - dogs and all, Navy Commander Mark Scovill, captain of the USS Tortuga, said Wednesday.

... So, one winning argument, said Scovill, revolves around people's pets, since many rescuers won't allow residents to take their beloved animals with them.

"The guy didn't have much to begin with and his dogs were more important than anything he had," said Scovill, in a telephone call from his ship. "He would rather stay there and be uncomfortable and miserable with his dogs, than be comfortable without them." As of Wednesday, sailors from the Tortuga had brought in about 50 pets, including dogs, cats and a few parrots, and put them in the newly built kennel at Naval Station New Orleans. After the pet owners were given food, water, medical attention and some rest, they were reunited with their animals and usually put on buses to shelters that would accepts the pets or to meet up with other family members.

hiker chick
09-10-2005, 11:26 AM
Pet rescuers race against time

By Peggy Mihelich

(CNN) -- On the flooded streets of New Orleans you can hear the dogs barking for miles. They are trapped -- in houses, on roofs, tied to porches. They are frightened and hungry.

For the pets left behind after Hurricane Katrina, relief is on the way, but it's a race against time.

"It's a dire situation," said Melissa Seide Rubin of the Humane Society of the United States.

Rescue workers are worried most about pets locked inside homes and whose food and water supply may have run out. For them, rescue is their only chance of survival.

"It's one at a time, and it's fairly slow work," said Michael Mountain, president and CEO of Best Friends Animal Society, one of the first animal organizations allowed into the city to rescue pets.

"They are certainly all frightened," Mountain said. "The most difficult ones to work with are the cats who hide under furniture. The dogs tend to be easier. You can put out a treat for them, you can generally bring them to you."

With federal agencies and law enforcement agencies overwhelmed with rescuing people, it has been left to animal welfare groups and civilians to help stranded pets.

"We weren't allowed into the really bad areas until just recently, so now we are playing catch-up," said Rubin, the Humane Society's vice president of field and disaster services.

The American Society for the Protection of Animals, the Humane Society, the Louisiana SPCA, and the Texas SPCA are involved in the operation.

The Humane Society has 200 people in the field to handle the more than 2,000 requests it has received from people who have called a hotline or sent information.

The rescues are being conducted mostly by boat. Teams using inflatable rafts locate stranded pets and take them to a drop-off point, where they can be transported to a shelter.

Since Tuesday the Humane Society has rescued 90 dogs and 34 cats. Mountain estimates his group has rescued between 800 and 900 animals since entering the city on August 30.

As soon as the pet arrives at a shelter it is photographed and checked for ID tags. The health of each pet is evaluated, and fluids and medical treatment is administered as needed.

The information is put into a database that pet owners and rescue groups are feeding information into and that the Louisiana State Veterinary Association is maintaining. Efforts are then made to contact the owner of the pet. Unclaimed pets will be sent to area shelters and made available for adoption.

Jo Sullivan, senior vice-president of communications for the ASPCA, said most of the rescued pets are in good health but are scared.

"We haven't seen anything worse than some minor abrasions, and mild dehydration and, of course, some dysentery from unclean water," she said.

At the Lamar Dixon Center in Gonzalez, Louisiana, 50 miles north of New Orleans, hundreds of people come every day looking for their pets.

For one man, forced to leave his pet when he evacuated, there's a sweet reunion with his dog, Miller.

"Daddy came and got you, didn't he," the man said to his dog as he gave Miller a rub on the base of his neck.

For the rescuers and volunteers seeing a pet reunited with its owner fuels their effort.

"When people have lost everything and if you can reunite them with their pets, it makes such a difference in their lives," Rubin said.

[/url]Not without my dog

In the desperate race to pull human survivors out of the flood, rescuers haven't been able to accommodate pets. Some people have refused to leave without them.

"When this thing happened, everybody was shooting at everybody. The only thing I trusted was my dogs. I'm not going to leave them," said Robert, a New Orleans man who would not give his last name.

"The government has to understand that people are not going to leave their pets," Rubin said.

"When someone won't leave their pet we try and be there at the same time so we can take it for them, so that they can be assured that they can be reunited at some point," Rubin said.

On Tuesday afternoon a man needing medical assistance held up a "fleet of ambulances" on the Interstate 10 exit to Causeway Boulevard because he refused to leave his dog, Mountain, of Best Friends, said. A nurse in the caravan called Best Friends to see if the group could help.

"By the time we got there, they had to wrench the dog from him," Mountain said. "They had a few others [dogs] as well. They tied up three of them and took off. We had the description and managed to get hold of all three."

While, many national organizations were held up at staging areas just outside the city, Best Friends had boats in the neighborhoods rescuing pets. On Saturday, with the permission of the Jefferson Parish sheriff, Best Friends workers "broke in" to a pet store and saved about 140 pets -- from hamsters to snakes to tarantulas to birds -- Mountain said.

("]Donations and help

Organizations involved in the rescue have gotten support in the form of donations of money, pet food and medical supplies.

"We've got stuff that was shipped in from well-wishers from all over the country," Mountain said. "Yesterday we got a pile of blankets that ran 15 feet high."

Nestle Purina PetCare shipped more than 33 tons of dog and cat food to the affected areas, spokesman Keith Schopp said.

"We are actually right now putting another donation together that will be coordinated through Louisiana State University," he said.

With supply needs met, agencies like the ASPCA and the Humane Society are turning their attention to the long-term needs of housing the displaced animals. Many shelters in the New Orleans area were destroyed by the hurricane or the flood that followed. They will need rebuilding.

"The best thing that people can do right now is donate dollars and let us buy what we need as we need it, Sullivan said.

CNN's Adaora Udoji and Christane Amanpour contributed to this report.

Country Boy in the City
09-14-2005, 11:42 AM
Hope I'm not off the topic to much but when went helped get the trucks off the yard at Camp Beaugard and to make sure they new where they were going we had one truck come back and the driver brought back 3 puppies that hadn't even open there eyes. Needless to say they found a home real fast at least a moving one other truckers adopted them and put in temporary beds aka carboard box sitting on the passanger seat untill they could get somthing more fitting. But what was amazing was the amount of truckers with dogs. Mostly small to med. sized like the basset hound. Now the sad story for alot of the dogs in New Orleans is there owners won't be able to take care of them or have a place for them.

hiker chick
09-14-2005, 01:03 PM
one truck come back and the driver brought back 3 puppies that hadn't even open there eyes. Needless to say they found a home real fast

That's a great story - thanks! :)

09-14-2005, 05:53 PM
Not sure how closely everyone has been folowing the Katrina dogs. My wife has been following the Rottweilers very closely. Most of the shelters offering to hold dogs are uthanizing them before the owners can be found. In some cases they are even refusing to release the dogs to rescue groups. We are on our way to pick up two Rotti's they released, but are being told the SPCA is refusing to release anymore. The politics in this is almost as bad as FEMA. :-x

Country Boy in the City
09-14-2005, 09:30 PM
The politics in this is almost as bad as FEMA. :-x
Hate to say it from what I saw with the Army Corps of Enginers and FEMA was a lot of confuseion b/c there was to many contractors and each one in a pissing contest. Sorry I know this has nothing to do with the animals but got to say what I saw

hiker chick
10-01-2005, 03:24 PM
:sad: :-(

AP - Oct 1:
"In New Orleans' eastern reaches, authorities said they had found 14 dead dogs. St. Bernard Parish spokesman Steve Cannizaro said 10 dogs were shot to death at a middle school, and four more were found at an elementary school. Authorities do not know who killed the animals."

10-01-2005, 04:33 PM
Oh my!!! That is just horrid!!! Who would do such a thing! And Why!

Country Boy in the City
10-02-2005, 10:49 PM
It's sad to hear of things like this but like I said in a different thread alot of people raise dogs for fighting in those areas this could be part of the reason why they were put down. There was two pit bulls shot by the national guard b/c they werre attacing a bull. I hope I'm not sounding like a dog hater because I'm not I love dogs and not used to not having one around like right now. I'm probly going to be working down in New Orleans so when I go there I try and send somthing back on what I see

10-02-2005, 11:08 PM
:sad: :-(

AP - Oct 1:
"In New Orleans' eastern reaches, authorities said they had found 14 dead dogs. St. Bernard Parish spokesman Steve Cannizaro said 10 dogs were shot to death at a middle school, and four more were found at an elementary school. Authorities do not know who killed the animals."

There is a reward for information leading to arrest in this case. (Warning link is disturbing and probably shouldn't be opened with children in the room.)

Also, there is an online petition to support The Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act (PETS Act, H.R. 3858), currently in Congress, that will protect pets in federal evacuation plans, and urge officials to save currently stranded pets.