HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) — Before Hurricane Hanna made landfall along the Texas coast, officials at the Humane Society of Harlingen adopted or fostered out most of their animals.
All adoptions and fostering are being done curbside because of COVID-19. Since the aftermath of Hanna, the shelter has seen an increase in calls from people wanting to know their options, including surrendering pets.
Officials also say they are seeing more pets come in who have been lost or separated from their families. Some animals may have escaped from their properties because of damaged fences or simply ran away because they were scared of the winds and storms.
However, instead of just saying yes, they are trying to help residents through their intake diversion program, which includes food from their pet pantry.
“It’s not simply saying no to an animal that people are trying to drop off here. It’s saying ‘hey your clearly wanting to help this animal, this is actually how you can help before ever having to drop off the animal here,’” says Luis Quintanilla, Executive Director, Humane Society of Harlingen.
The Humane Society of Harlingen says year to date they have achieved a save rate of more than 90 percent, which is in the no-kill zone for shelters.
Quintanilla says if you have lost a pet or would like to foster or adopt they do post pictures of all the animals they take-in on their website.
Officials also say if you have not microchipped your pets, now would be a good time to do so. The shelter will microchip your pet for just $15.
The Palm Valley Animal Society also says they have seen pets surrendered or lost because of the storms but could not say if they have seen an increase or not because their numbers have been impacted by COVID.
Quintanilla says the need for fostering or volunteers is never-ending. If you would like to help you can visit their website.