The Petfinder Foundation has rushed a $5,000 disaster grant to Central Oklahoma Humane Society, which is finding and housing pets displaced by Monday’s deadly tornado in Oklahoma. The grant money will be used to pay for the pets’ medical care, sheltering and food, and it will help with the staffing costs associated with the shelter’s around-the-clock response.
Under normal circumstances, the shelter takes in 250 to 300 animals a month. As soon as the tornado struck, it emptied all its kennels of adoptable pets — either by transferring them to partner rescues or placing them in foster homes — to provide room for the more than 200 displaced pets expected to come in.
Already the shelter has have taken in more than 130 dogs, and the shelter’s staff have been working around the clock. It has taken in only a few displaced cats – but Director of Outreach Amy Shrodes tells us she expects that number will quickly rise.
“It’s still a very chaotic environment in Moore,” she says. “We are thinking most of the cats are still hiding.”
When we caught up with Shrodes on Tuesday, she was finally back in her office after spending the morning searching through the rubble in Moore. During the morning’s search, she and her staff found three dogs, among them a Sheltie who was stuck in a tree’s branches. “He was actually in better shape than some of the dogs we found who weren’t in trees,” she says.
Many of the displaced pets were injured in the storm. “We are looking at an at least 50 percent injury rate for the animals that are coming in,” Shrodes says.
Injured pets are being treated at the in-shelter clinic and at local veterinarians’ offices. The animals have been damaged by debris and are dealing with abrasions, eye injuries, lacerations and fractured legs.
The shelter currently is in need of syringes, needles, sterile gloves, gowns, shoe covers, pet shampoo, clipper blades and chemical antiseptic, Shrodes says.
“We are working around the clock to take in as many displaced animals as possible,” Shrodes says. “This money will go a long way.”