Sacramento, CA – One year after Hurricane Harvey struck Texas, efforts are still underway to rebuild housing and reunite families in affected communities. The hurricane was one of the most devastating natural disasters to hit the United States since Hurricane Katrina, and RedRover was one of the organizations helping in the immediate aftermath. Together with SPCA of Texas, RedRover Responders helped shelter more than 150 pet dogs and cats.
Since then, RedRover has worked closely with local Texas animal welfare and protection organizations to determine their ongoing needs post-Harvey. In anticipation of hurricane season, which occurs June through November, RedRover selected three organizations to receive funding to help them recover from Hurricane Harvey and prepare for future disasters.
Animal Investigation and Response (AIR) is an animal welfare non-profit organization in Texas. RedRover’s funding will allow them to purchase a pick-up truck and 40-foot trailer that will be customized to transport animals in need — doubling their current evacuation capacity. Additionally, with this funding AIR will buy 500 wire cages and 500 plastic crates to transport and shelter cats and dogs in disasters. Finally, this funding establishes a veterinary medical fund to provide medical care for animals in disasters.
“By increasing our cage/crate supplies and doubling our transport resources, we feel confident that RedRover is not only helping us prepare for a disaster, but setting the state of Texas up for success,” said AIR President Monica Ailey.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, the animal surrender rate in Houston shelters has increased 25 percent. Many residents are still not in homes and cannot find pet-friendly rentals so are forced to surrender their pets, and the number of homeless animals on the streets is at an all-time high.
Houston PetSet supports animal welfare nonprofits in the Greater Houston area to help end animal homelessness and suffering. Funds will support two transports of approximately 300 homeless dogs and cats to placement partners in the Midwest to free up needed space in Houston shelters.
Tama Lundquist, co-president of Houston PetSet, says, “We are so grateful for RedRover’s support. It will allow our shelters to move animals to forever homes that would otherwise be euthanized and give our rescues the chance to move animals through their programs and get more homeless pets off the street.”
The Empty Shelter Project sets up MASH-style clinics to provide free spay, neuter and vaccination services in underserved Houston areas. With RedRover’s grant, they held a special community clinic on June 23 where they provided spay, neuter, vaccinations, microchip, flea and worm treatment free of charge for 343 dogs and cats.
Randy Kissling, a founder of The Empty Shelter Project, says, “Not only will RedRover’s grant help hundreds of animals, we see a tremendous value in our clients talking about the benefits of spay and neuter to family and friends in their communities which can go a long way to solving our pet overpopulation problem.”
Since 1987 RedRover has focused on bringing animals out of crisis and strengthening the human-animal bond through emergency sheltering, disaster relief services, financial assistance and education. With more than 4,000 trained volunteers in the United States and Canada, RedRover can deploy its volunteers quickly when communities become overburdened by a crisis involving large numbers of animals. In its 30-year history, RedRover has responded to 189 natural disasters and other crises, including Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and Katrina, Carr Fire, Superstorm Sandy, 9/11 and so much more. Additionally, RedRover is a founding member of the National Animal Rescue and Sheltering Coalition (NARSC), established after Hurricane Katrina’s devastating impact to more people and animals than any other storm in the history of the United States. To learn more, please visit RedRover.org.
About Animal Investigation and Response (AIR)
Animal Investigation and Response is a 501(c)(3) animal protection organization that assists law enforcement, animal control agencies and communities with animal abuse related issues such as puppy mills and animal hoarding, and also provides assistance in disaster relief. Based in Texas, Animal Investigation and Response was formed by two certified animal cruelty investigators who saw a need to help connect agencies with strategies and resources to investigate as well as provide aid for situations that exceed the scope of a community’s reach.
About Houston PetSet
Houston PetSet is a 501(c)(3) umbrella organization dedicated to making a difference by providing grants to animal welfare-related nonprofits in the Greater Houston area. By providing critical funds and working together with strategic partners, Houston PetSet seeks to end homelessness and alleviate suffering for the animals.
About The Empty Shelter Project
Created by K-9 Angels Rescue, The Empty Shelter Project was formed to prevent pet overpopulation by providing free spay, neuter and vaccination services in underserved Houston areas. Each quarterly event treats approximately 350 dogs and cats.