BOSTON and Salem Mass., Oct. 6, 2022 – On the heels of the MSPCA and NEAS evacuating dozens of cats before Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida last week, the two organizations partnered again to bring 29 more cats to Massachusetts. The cats from Humane Society Naples in Naples and Humane Society of Sarasota County in Sarasota were homeless and living in the shelters prior to the disaster.
Yesterday, the organizations had transport vans on the ground in Binghamton, New York, where they met a flight full of cats arranged and funded by the Bissell Pet Foundation.
“Evacuating 42 cats last week allowed shelters in Florida to make space for cats displaced by the hurricane,” explained Mike Keiley, MSPCA-Angell director of adoption centers and programs and executive director of NEAS. “But the state’s been hit hard. I’m proud that we’re able to step up once again to help animals in need, impacted by a natural disaster.”
Of those 42 cats evacuated last week, 12 have been adopted so far.
“These [newly arriving] cats were brought to Massachusetts where loving homes await, which gave the Florida shelters more space to help pets in need there,” he added. “We’ll continue to help out in Florida as much as we can, even if it stretches our resources thin.”
The cats arrived at NEAS in Salem the evening of October 5. They’ll be available for adoption after the state-mandated 48-hour quarantine and after they receive any medical attention they may need.
“It’s an Ongoing Situation that Requires Much More Help”
According to Keiley, the situation in Florida remains fluid and demands ongoing support from organizations such as the MSPCA.
“There’s a truism in animal welfare that rings especially relevant now: when people are in need, animals are in need,” he said. “Local shelters that were already at capacity will likely be inundated with animals displaced by the storm that are unable to be reunited with their owners despite all efforts, or surrendered by people who’ve lost everything and can no longer care for their pets. We’re committed to doing everything we can to help the shelters, the animals and the people on the ground—and no doubt more animals, including dogs as well as cats, will likely be making their way to Massachusetts in the near future.”
Additionally, the two organizations will receive another transport of about 22 cats from Okeechobee County Animal Control later this week. Those cats are expected to be housed at the MSPCA’s Cape Cod Adoption Center. More information about those cats will be released when it is available.
The MSPCA is asking that anyone able to donate to help offset the cost of caring for these cats do so at MSPCA.org/ian.