HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) – On the tarmac of the Richmond Jet Center, a flight from Port Charlotte, Florida, touched down with dozens of shelter animals evacuated from the Animal Welfare League of Charlotte County following the aftermath of Hurricane Ian.
Staff members from the Richmond SPCA and the Fredericksburg SPCA took in these shelter pets, who were homeless and waiting to be adopted before Hurricane Ian hit, as part of their joint effort to provide relief to shelters in Florida.
“It’s a really great effort to be part of,” said Nicole Harrig, coordinator of transfers with the Richmond SPCA.
The Humane Society of the United States funded and coordinated the flight.
The Fredericksburg SPCA took in 32 shelter animals, including 15 dogs and 16 cats.
“We’re very excited to be able to help,” said Carrie Withers, executive director of the Fredericksburg SPCA.
The Richmond SPCA took in 21 shelter pets, including 16 cats and five dogs, to help shelters in Florida with their disaster response.
“This just means animals that have been displaced by the hurricane and their families are also displaced that are looking for them, they are in a safe space to be reunited with their families,” said Harrig.
This flight comes more than one week after more than 100 shelter pets from Puerto Rico arrived in Richmond following the aftermath of Hurricane Fiona.
Harrig said they have a few pets they took in from Puerto Rico up for adoption, and two found their forever homes on Thursday.
“We are in the process of finding their forever homes,” she said.
Over the next several days, staff members will make sure these shelter pets are healthy and have updated vaccines before placing them up for adoption. Harrig said this is a mission they wouldn’t have been able to accomplish without support from those living in the River City.
“Our community support as well through adoptions has been able to create space and help up bring these animals in who have been displaced by this hurricane,” she said.
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