PORTLAND, Ore. The Oregon Humane Society is sending a team of four people to help animals in Houston.
Sherry Adams and three others will leave Portland for Houston on Wednesday morning. Adams say they plan to stay about week at a shelter in Houston, helping however they can.
She says she’s not sure what her official duties will be, but she’s ready to clean up, feed animals, exercise dogs, set up kennels -- whatever is required.
The team of four consists of two Oregon Humane Society staff members and two volunteers. Adams is one of the volunteers.
While others on her team have helped in natural disasters before, this will be Adams’ first natural disaster. She’s well-trained but says the journey will be one she will never forget.
“You have to kind of compartmentalize, because if I’m thinking about the horrible situation people are in, I don’t want to transmit that to the animals,” said Adams. “I want them to be calm and feel good, so I have to be that way when I deal with the animals. But I imagine it will be tough, especially in the evenings, at least more me."
The OHS team will work hand-in-hand with the Houston SPCA, and will provide assistance in caring for animals at a facility located in the Houston area.
“Natural disasters of this scale can leave thousands of animals without homes and will easily overwhelm the ability of local shelters to care for pets,” said Sharon Harmon, OHS President and CEO.
At the same time, shelters surrounding Houston are moving current strays to other shelters across the country. The move clears kennels to make room for animals directly impacted by the disaster.
Wings of Rescue, a nonprofit, is expected to fly about 40 stray animals from Texas to the Oregon Humane Society, possibly as soon as Wednesday night.
Those animals will then be up for adoption here in Oregon soon after, from a couple days to a week, depending on their situation, says OHS spokesperson David Lytle.