Four-legged hurricane evacuees arrive in Tulsa

Wednesday, October 5th 2005, 10:47 am
By: News On 6

More hurricane evacuees arrived in Tulsa Wednesday, this time they're the four-legged variety.

Volunteers unloaded four semi-trailers full of animals from the hurricane zone. The Tulsa Humane Society is now trying to find temporary homes for about 150 cats and dogs.

News on 6 reporter Ashli Sims has more on some of the animals that Katrina left homeless.

Hurricane Katrina robbed people of their livelihoods, their homes, and their pets. Thousands of animals were rescued from the ruins of New Orleans and Tulsans are being asked to take in a four-legged friend until they can be returned to their owner.

The parking lot in front of the Tulsa Humane Society at 68th and Memorial has been turned into something of a pet bazaar. Some are eager to play, others shy away from strangers and all have been through quite an ordeal.

They're survivors of Hurricane Katrina in from Nogalez, Louisiana courtesy of some volunteer truckers. Volunteer driver Daniel Smith: "I grew up with animals: goats, sheep, cows, horses and I really felt that there was a need, this needed to be done for them.”

The Tulsa Humane Society has taken the animals in hopes of placing them in foster care. Tulsa Humane Society president Gina Gardner: "Basically we're asking people to open their hearts and their homes to just provide temporary foster care for a month or two months while we look for their owners."

Laura Hayward and her husband want to help. One dog caught her eye, but another stole her heart. Gina Gardner: "So many times there's just that instant bond. Ya’know you saw her look at the one dog and it just wasn't a fit. The minute that one came out and you could see it was a perfect match. It’s wonderful, I just hope we have a 150 of those today.”

A new foster mom says she's just trying to abide by the golden rule. Laura Hayward: "I would hope if something happened here in Oklahoma someone would take care of my babies." Some of these pets have owners who are probably looking for them, others have sadder stories. “The owner, the owner was murdered, oh my stars.” But she's found a new friend and with a new name. “You think Louise for Louisiana, yeah, that’s great, that’s a good idea." And a new start, hopefully she'll have a happier ending.

A number of cats and were placed in homes Wednesday. If you're interested in volunteering your home or your time, call the Tulsa Humane Society at 250-DOGS. Despite all they've been through, Wednesday’s evacuees are some really friendly and loveable dogs and cats.