Animal Refuge Center offers space to Sanibel’s CROW

Reporter: Taylor Wirtz
Published: Updated:

As Southwest Florida’s largest no-kill shelter, the Animal Refuge Center is used to taking in cats and dogs in search of homes.

But now, it’ll be welcoming creatures who are a bit wilder.

After Hurricane Ian, the Sanibel-based Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife needed a temporary home and the Animal Refuge Center had the space.

“I think, throughout hurricane Ian, we’ve seen a lot of neighbors taking in neighbors, family members taking in loved ones, just offering a place to stay,” said Dr. Laura Leinen,  a board trustee of the Animal Refuge Center. “And this may look a little different because it’s our dog and cat shelter, welcoming, welcoming in injured wildlife. But we’re so fortunate and lucky to be able to do that.”

Leinen said the center recently had a new clinic built and it’s been a struggle to find what to do with the old one.

“When I saw what was happening with Sanibel and Captiva, my first thought was, oh, my goodness, CROW,” Leinen said.

While CROW’s clinic is still standing, the damage it sustained will displace its staff and animals for at least the near future.

This offer from the Animal Refuge Center will let them continue doing what they do best when so many of Southwest Florida’s animals just like its people are in need.

“It meant not having to start from a four walls and a shell, there’s a lot of things that are here that we can share, and things that we can bring from the island to have this facility up and running much quicker than in any other facility would have have been. Right. So that means so much because again, we can take care of the animals and, and be back in business,” said CROW Executive Director Alison Charney Hussey.

CROW will temporarily house its animals at the Animal Refuge Center in North Fort Myers. (CREDIT: CROW)

Leinen said is excited about helping CROW.

“I think people will see us working together and know that the animals that they love, whether domestic or wild, are still being taken care of,” Hussey said.

Both the Animal Refuge Center and CROW are in need of donations and fosters to make room for more animals.

CROW will temporarily house its animals at the Animal Refuge Center in North Fort Myers. (CREDIT: CROW)

If you’re interested in donating to CROW, visit this link.

If you’re interested in donating to the Animal Refuge Center, visit this link.

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