We've all heard the news, viewed the frightening images - and so many of us have felt helpless, being so far away from the people and animals in need. Well, the opportunities are beginning to arise!
Blog Paws Be the Change, our wonderful group that provides endless support for pet bloggers, has called for all bloggers to spread the news today that just as there are search-and-rescue crews combing through rubble in hopes of saving people's lives, there are also groups of people who are heading out on search-and-rescues for the sake of the animals stranded after all that has occurred in Japan. What a relief to know!! Japan is known as a country of people who have great respect for animals, and who absolutely adore their pets. Their reverence for cats is exemplary. Remembering Hurricane Katrina, and all the people who didn't want to leave their homes because of their pets, I can only imagine how much that is also true now in Japan.
According to the article on Blog Paws, there are at least several different groups looking to rescue animals, treat them, shelter them - and then feed and house them until they are in their former homes or a new one. And just like the foreclosure crisis we've had here, there are people who cannot care for their pets and must relinquish them; that would add a tremendous toll to the rescue groups in the country! Not to mention, the cost of the vaccinations, medicines, IV fluids (wonder how many animals will be found dehydrated?), food, water, and the purchase of things they can use to house the animals that are rescued.
World Vets, a 501c3 organization run by Dr. Cathy King, has been coordinating with other groups and officials to ascertain what will be needed - and will be on the ground in Japan themselves with vets ready to care for animals. Fundraising is needed for the untold expenses that will be incurred in rescuing, treating, and in general helping the animals that have been exposed to all that the disaster involves. As such, the organization has set up a ChipIn site for ease of donations. Feeling helpless to do something about the crisis in Japan? This is one way you can most definitely help. Just click on the ChipIn at the upper right here. (As I write this, World Vets is experiencing a server overload; be sure to use the ChipIn link for your donation).
On the Blog Paws site, there is a listing of various groups that are working to help save and treat the animal victims in Japan. Please visit this page for details. Perhaps one very wonderful bonus of helping with the rescue and care of the animals is that it would undoubtedly be helping the people of Japan as well - especially the pet owners who have lost their pets, are frantic to find them, and worried sick over the welfare of their beloved pet.
Update: An article in CNN details the possible magnitude of just what these rescuers are facing, and interviews Dr. King about the work of World Vets in Japan.
Image source: World Vets (Facebook)