We’ve sent $6,000 in disaster aid to Longmont Humane Society (LHS) in Longmont, Colo., where staff members have been working tirelessly to care for 190 pets displaced by the region’s deadly floods. This grant follows yesterday’s $3,000 disaster grant to nearby Humane Society of Boulder Valley, which is housing 70 displaced pets. (Read about HSBV’s grant.)
“We are incredibly grateful,” LHS Executive Director Liz Smokowski tells us in a phone call from the busy shelter, which has stayed open to help pets despite being located in an evacuation zone.
Development Associate Carrie Brackenridge tells us that some 1,500 homes have been destroyed and another 17,500 have been damaged by the flooding, which began on Sept. 12.
As with HSBV, the displaced pets arrived when the shelter was already full. “Single-occupancy capacity at LHS is 368 animals,” Brackenridge tells us. “As of Sept. 17, we are housing 441 animals. As a result of caring for evacuated animals, LHS is experiencing an increase in our daily operational costs. Supplies such as food, healthcare items and cleaning products have been in increased usage, and resources such as staff time and utility usage have increased dramatically.”
Shelter staff are fitting in the extra animals wherever they can, housing many in office spaces.
To make matters worse, some of the displaced pets are showing signs of Giardia infection that they may have contracted from the floodwaters. An outbreak of Giardia, a highly contagious intestinal parasite, would threaten all the shelter’s animals, so staffers are disinfecting aggressively and feeding the affected pets special food. “We are really starting to worry that the next chapter in this crisis is going to be medical issues,” Smokowski says.
Our disaster grant will be a huge help. “This funding from Petfinder Foundation will be instrumental in relieving the costs associated with current rescue efforts,” Smokowski says. “We are very grateful!”