BOSTON, Sept. 7, 2022 – In the wake of deadly storms that brought devastating flooding to Kentucky—and has left more than two dozen people dead and hundreds displaced—the MSPCA-Angell and Northeast Animal Shelter (NEAS) have turned their attention to the state’s other vulnerable constituents: cats.
The flooding that began in July meant that Kentucky animal shelters who were already dealing with animal capacity issues were even further strained with an influx of newly displaced dogs and cats. Moreover, the Kentucky shelter staff – like animal care professionals across the country – has been experiencing compassion fatigue and burnout at levels not seen in years, exacerbating an already critical situation.
MSPCA and NEAS to the Rescue
Two NEAS staffers flew to Kentucky on September 2 to assist Kentucky Humane Society with readying the cats for safe transport back to Massachusetts. While there, the team also provided badly-needed relief for shelter staff working overtime for many months, even before the flooding that impacted their homes and communities as well.
The transport van funded and arranged by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) arrived at NEAS in Salem on September 6 with the cats immediately brought inside to begin their mandatory 48-hour quarantine.
Mike Keiley, director of adoption centers and programs at the MSPCA-Angell —and executive director of NEAS— reinforced the organizations’ commitment to assisting with disaster relief whenever and wherever animals and people are impacted.
“Since our affiliation with NEAS in 2021, we’ve made it a priority to be involved as much as possible in disaster relief by way of partnerships with the ASPCA and others to provide on the ground assistance and relocation for animals out of harm’s way,” he said.
A Call for Donations
The arrival of the cats comes on the heels of rescue operations in Virginia – during which NEAS and MSPCA took in more than 200 beagles from the Envigo breeding facility – and the August 2 arrival of 150 cats from Florida who have all since been adopted. The MSPCA and NEAS have asked that anyone able to donate toward the cost of caring for these cats do so at mspca.org/kentuckycats or neas.org/kentuckycats.
“We’re going to do to all we can for these cats, for as long as it takes to get them adopted,” said Keiley. “Any help that the public can provide will help ensure they receive veterinary care and other essentials, so that they all get the second chance that they deserve.”
Owing to intense demand for adoptable pets coming from disaster situations, NEAS has asked would-be adopters to visit neas.org/adopt for more information about the cats and when they will be ready for adoption.