The minute I heard about the earthquake in Haiti, I knew that the animals there would need us. And it didn’t take long before the Petfinder.com Foundation joined ARCH, the Animal Relief Coalition for Haiti, with our partners in disaster relief, the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), and the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) as well as over a dozen other leading animal welfare organizations.
Soon teams were on their way to the ravaged island. Dr. Dick Green, with IFAW, reports that they are treating between 50-100 dogs every day.
“We’re seeing a lot of injuries to the paws,” he says. “You need to remember that everywhere you look the concrete is down, and we have concrete mixed in with glass and sharp objects, and these poor dogs are foraging through this rubble to try and find food.
Read more about the disaster relief efforts in Haiti after the jump.
“Spanky specifically one of those who we just came across yesterday.
And spanky had been walking through the rubble and it looked like maybe
had cut its paw on the rubble. So fortunately we were able to get some
sutures into the dog and clean out the would very well and actually get
it some pain management just to get it through this critical couple of
days so that Spanky can have a recovery.” (Read his and other blogs
about IFAW and ARCH’s relief efforts on the IFAW blog.)
With all the human needs, many still not being met, some detractors
might say that thinking about the animals affected is secondary. But
Katrina taught us that animal issues are human issues and are an
essential part of any disaster response.
For one thing, animal issues can be a public safety issue, according to IFAW’s Ian Robinson, who told the Associated Press,
“When you get situations with a large group of displaced people and
hungry dogs wandering around, then you’ve got the opportunities for dog
bites to occur, and that obviously leads to the spread of rabies.”
But it’s more than just public safety; it’s caring for those who are
least able to care for themselves. It’s about compassion for all.
So while I hope you have donated to the relief efforts for humans, I
hope, too, that you can spare something for the animal of Haiti as
well. The Petfinder.com Foundation is actively supporting ARCH with
funding for emergency care and supplies for animals during this time of
immediate need. Please help us spread the word about this very real
need to other pet lovers by sharing this message, and support the animals of Haiti by donating today.
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