The last weekend in August 2017 was a tragic time for most of Texas. Hurricane Harvey took everyone by surprise and quickly flooded the greater Houston area. As a result there were not only thousands of displaced people, but there were also thousands of displaced animals. Once the storm was over, photos and videos started to pop up online of how devastating the destruction was. When I saw this, we immediately started getting our rescue prepared for the chaos that was soon to come. We started contacting shelters and rescue groups to see how we could help. But many had no way of contacting us back as they were struggling to get animals out of rapidly rising waters. We continued to be persistent, talking to anyone we could get ahold of to see what animals we can bring to Austin. We thought there was a light at the end of the tunnel as rescue missions started to play out. But then the dams were released… at this point it was like a second storm in itself. Animal sanctuaries that were still struggling to get animals out had to triple their efforts as waters started to rise even quicker.
As a result of this tragedy, we started to network to find out how we could relieve shelters of space to prepare for more incoming animals. We took animals both from the floods and from local shelters to make room so they could say “yes” for the next batch of animals in need of a dry place to sleep. Our volunteers and fosters stepped up and started working together to arrange transports and to make room in their personal homes. In three days time, we saved 31 cats and are still saving more daily. Most of the animals we have taken in are suffering from numerous illnesses and/or injuries. Most have phenomena, ringworm, and are malnourished. As a result, we hope to raise funds for their care and surgeries needed.
Through one of the worse tragedies we have seen in Texas, we have also seen one of the most beautiful sites in the animal rescue community. Rescues and shelters working together hand in hand with one common goal: To get as many animals to safety as quickly as possible. We have moved mountains that we have never thought possible and have pulled together resources that we never imagined having, in a blink of an eye. To see such a tragic event paired with such a beautiful event is quite buoyant. As Texas continues to try to recover from the destruction of Hurricane Harvey, we will continue trying to provide the best care to its animal victims. Please consider donating to their care by clicking on our YouCaring link. We will follow up with posts with more information on individual cats that need extra care. We look forward to seeing our new additions in our rescue blossom in our foster homes and soon finding their forever homes.