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Animals displaced by hurricanes being cared for in Nebraska

By on October 29, 2018

The southeast has once again been battered by hurricanes- this time, Florence and Michael- so once again, Nebraska humane organizations are at the ready to accept responsibility for animals displaced by the storms.

Hearts United for Animals is leading the rescue efforts in this round of life saving. The Auburn, NE, group was at Council Bluffs’ airport last week to accept 20 cats and 20 dogs from Florida and the Carolinas. The animals from shelters effected by the hurricanes were transported to Iowa from Alabama via plane and Wings of Rescue.

Disaster relief has been a major part of Hearts United’s m.o. in recent years and the current displaced animals are being treated and cared for by volunteers and veterinarians who work with the rescue.

“These sweet kids have their fair share of feeling yucky right now,” said Jill Longshaw of Hearts United. “Some came off the plane coughing and saw the vet on Friday, the day after they arrived.” The coughing animals were given meds and quarantined where they’ll be watched in the coming days.

One pup, a dog Longshaw calls “Sweet Nala,” was rushed to Urgent Care in Omaha as her breathing became more labored.  She was placed in isolation there after being diagnosed with pneumonia. Longshaw estimates the condition was probably caused by some offshoot of Bordatella that the vaccine wouldn’t eradicate. Nala is now under Dr. Jensen’s care at Mobile Animal Clinic.

Six other dogs are at the shelter being treated with antibiotics. Three others, including two black lab babies, are suffering from intestinal issues. Something as simple as diet change can cause this, but the rescue is using a “super watchful eye,” Longshaw said.

Birmingham Buddy

Another animal that’s concerning volunteers and vets is Wilmington, a female pup with a grade VI heart murmur. “That’s hardcore stuff–the most serious level,” Longshaw said. “She’s just a big baby who wants to crawl all over humans and slobber faces.”

Although it’s a “sorry group” right now, Longshaw said it is beautiful, loving, and cuddly.

Not from the plane, but also a hurricane-displaced pup, is Buddy. “We actually received Buddy on Friday night from a ground transfer from the same hurricane-affected area,” Longshaw said. Buddy is “very sweet,” and the rescue hopes he’s healthy, too.

The rescue will treat the animals it received on Oct. 25, preparing them for adoption. The work won’t end there, it seems. “We’re in touch with GreaterGood and Wings of Rescue,” Longshaw said. Hearts United is hoping to be able to help with another group of animals from the storm-ravaged southeast.

If you’d like to help with the cost of care for these animals, please visit www.hua.org and give your support. Without groups like Hearts United, it’s hard to imagine storm-affected dogs and cats like these having a happy ending.

About Eric Forrest

Eric is a pet lover, bookworm and dad. He's had 5 family dogs, 4 cats, a cottontail rabbit he nursed back to health, and two ducks. Cats are his preference, but Eric loves all little critters.

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