How to help the other animals affected by the BP oil spill »
Get ready for a downer. A CNN corespondent visited the Louisiana SPCA to see the other side of the BP oil spill’s effect on animals. There’s been a huge surge of pets surrendered to Louisiana animal shelters because families who’ve been hit hard financially by the oil spill can no longer afford to care for them. One rescue, the St. Bernard Parish animal shelter, saw 17 dogs surrendered by their owners in June, 2009; this year they had 127 dogs surrendered in June. Fucking A. The SPCA is calling for BP to start chipping in to help families keep their pets. They are also offering free veterinary care for people in the fishing industry in certain coastal regions. If you want to help out, you can donate money to this effort on the Louisiana SPCA website. The St. Bernard Parish animal shelter is also calling for volunteers. Everybody is looking for more foster homes as shelters are at capacity.
Another organization getting involved is the Animal Rescue of New Orleans, a rescue formed to help animals affected by Katrina. As a no-kill shelter, they have people driving all the way to their shelter near New Orleans to surrender their pets in the hopes they won’t be put down before they can find new homes. This little white dog is Chloe, she was surrendered and required surgery to remove bladder stones. With people barely able to provide for their healthy pets, pets that need expensive medical care are probably screwed. ARNO is also trying to keep pets in their homes with their Pet Retention Program. This program helps low income and unemployed people keep their pets by paying for their care. They are in dire needs of funds right now and you can donate (with paypal!) here.
Another, more fun way to help is to sponsor an animal. On the Plaquemines Animal Welfare Society’s website, you can sponsor an animal and they will even send you a cute picture of “your” animal like this one to the right. I think sponsoring animals is a great way for kids to get involved in rescue efforts. They get a pet by-proxy and they also learn about the realities homeless pets as opposed to pet shops selling animals.
There’s an interesting personal account of a visit to the St. Bernard Parish animal shelter on the blog ohmidog. You have to scroll to the bottom as it was a stop on a road trip. The writer discusses the conditions of the shelter as well as disaster economics.
That’s all for today. I don’t have any good jokes because I am sad. It’s sad that the pets don’t have homes, it’s also sad that people don’t have their pets anymore. Pets are good for you!