NORTH FORT MYERS, Fla.- After surviving devastating flood waters in South Carolina last month, many pets were separated from their owners.
Many of which ended up in shelters already over capacity.
The Animal Refuge Center (ARC) in North Fort Myers decided they needed to help, and agreed to take in 11 dogs and 15 cats, one of the largest groups of animals they’ve taken in at once.
“We’ve been creating the crates and the kennels that you see here,” said Wayne Leinen Jr., with ARC.”Making sure everyone had clean linens and water was set up, food was brought nearby and all the medical supplies you see here so we could provide this mass intake.”
The ARC worked along side Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, who helped transport the animals from a shelter in North Carolina, where they were originally moved, to Southwest Florida.
Leinen said these animals were let go by their original owners after the floods, and had passed their holding period in the shelter. They were in danger of being euthanized.
Thursday afternoon, the animals arrived at the center, and immediately received health screenings.
“There certainly are dogs that probably have not had the proper nutrition for a little while,” said Laura Braun-Leinen, a veterinarian at ARC. She added they need to check for issues that could stem from conditions in the floods and overcrowded shelters.
“We’re basically looking for signs of internal and external parasites, so fleas and ticks, are very common in shelter situations, hookworms and roundworms and tapeworms, that kind of thing.”
She said they were already aware of the medical issues in some of the animals, and plan to treat them at their expense.
Lauren Tarentino works with Brother Wolf, and drove a truck full of dogs and cats more than 1,100 miles on Thursday.
“This is just a great way for me to give back,” she said. “I feel really good that these dogs were taken from overpopulated shelters or from a situation like the South Carolina flooding like most of the dogs today came from, and they’re given a second chance at life.”
The Humane Society in Naples also took in a number of animals from South Carolina a few weeks ago, and now say there’s only about two or three that still haven’t been adopted.
The 26 dogs and cats will be kept in their medical center until next week, where they will begin being released into foster homes. They will later be placed for adoption into homes.