I thought I'd share this message from Catster.

Dear Catster member,
It's been three weeks since Katrina slammed in the Gulf Coast of the U.S. Along with the rest of the country, we've been confounded by the scope of the devastation, yet emboldened to do all we can to ameliorate the losses and to help life begin anew.We are so impressed with the efforts our members and the rescue organizations have made to coordinate relief, fundraise, increase awareness and foster stranded pets. We really wanted to share how impressive this effort has been and how proud we are of our community for its hard work. We'd also like to share our deepest sympathies for all victims, animal and human, of this tragedy. You must all know the disaster has left thousands of dogs and cats stranded, scared, and in need of evacuation. Rescuing, reuniting and fostering these animals will take the efforts of the whole country and months to complete. Running Dogster & Catster has given us a very broad perspective of the animal rescue efforts thanks to the many emails, forums posts, and direct communication coming to us from our 125,000 members. It is our hope that by collecting and sharing some of this information with you, animals will be helped.With food needs mostly met, for agencies like the ASPCA, Humane Society, American Veterinary Medical Association, Animal Welfare Institute, and many, many more the primary need is meeting the long-term housing needs of the displaced animals. The hurricane and the flood that followed destroyed many shelters in the New Orleans area. Temporary shelters have been established but their resources are overwhelmed and rebuilding efforts will simply take too long. What is needed is urgent assistance moving rescued animals to safe havens out of state. Animal welfare teams have rescued thousands of animals from the streets of New Orleans and throughout the Gulf Coast region, but thousands more remain stranded and it's a race against the clock to help them. With federal agencies and law enforcement agencies overwhelmed with the human dilemmas, animal welfare groups and civilians are the last lifeline for stranded pets. Along these lines we would like to say "Paws Up" to two organizations who recently helped in this area. The North Shore Animal League and one of our sponsors, Dad's Pet Care, successfully chartered a 737 and airlifted over 100 pets to safety Thursday morning. Well done.Organizations like the ASPCA still need your help both financially and by volunteering your time and energy! Visit our Katrina site updates page which lists all the organization we have so far confirmed are doing excellent work on the ground. http://www.catster.com/site_updates.php?p=197 Also, you can use our "Hurricane Katrina" and "Adoption & Rescue" forums to share more relief organizations and helpful information with the whole community. We will keep our special Katrina forums up until the last pet is reunited with its family. http://www.catster.com/forums/?t=82905 Since this is now a national problem, you can also call any local SPCA or most any animal shelter and just ask... "What can I do to help?" Chances are there is something you can do in your home town right now that will help heal this tremendous wound.Sincere thanks for all you have done and all you will do. We're lucky to have you as members!Thank you and may all animals be happy and safe,Ted, John & Steven Catster, here kitty kitty! http://www.catster.com>^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^< >^..^<

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