AUSTIN, TX — In the aftermath of Winter Storm Uri, thousands of Texas pets entered shelters. Many of these pets are now at risk of euthanasia in shelters that are already full or lack the resources to help them. Austin Pets Alive! is urgently working with dozens of shelter partners, with the goal of transporting 1,000 or more animals to safe shelters throughout the United States in the next two weeks.
“We are receiving urgent pleas for help from shelters throughout Texas,” said Maddie’s® Director of Pet Supply and Demand, Clare Callison. “Many of these organizations are small, rural shelters that don’t have indoor kennels or adequate space for the number of puppies, kittens, and adult pets they’re receiving.”
Animals are being transported from Texas towns and cities including Tyler, Dallas, El Paso, San Antonio, Devine, Gonzales, Laredo, and Harlingen. Receiving cities include Cheyenne, WY; Chicago, IL; Salt Lake City, UT; Spokane, WA; Arlington, VA; Denver, CO; and several others. Air and ground transports are planned for this and next week. These transports are made possible by hundreds of individual donations as well as gifts from organizations like Merrick Pet Care, who gave Austin Pets Alive! a $10,000 fund to get pets to safety.
“Animal shelters can become quickly overwhelmed by infrastructure damage and increased intake following catastrophic weather events,” shared APA! CEO and President, Dr. Ellen Jefferson, DVM. “After Hurricane Harvey, we rescued 5,000 animals. We’re using the lessons we learned then to save every cat and dog we can. We must act now because animals are at risk today.”
Texas shelters who need help getting pets out as well as shelters that are able to transport and/or receive cats and dogs should contact [email protected]. The biggest need at this time is for organizations that can safely transport pets. To help make these transports happen, people are encouraged to give to Austin Pets Alive! here.