The Erie County SPCA is helping shelter dogs in areas hit by hurricanes.
SPCA Communications Manager Bethany Kloc said 21 dogs that were up for adoption in the Tampa Bay area of Florida are being sheltered here so the new animals coming into Tampa shelters because of Hurricane Irma have a safe place to live until their families come forward and find them.
"There's a non-profit organization called Wings of Rescue. These are a group of private citizens who own their own private planes," Kloc said. And they quite often bring dogs up from the South - where dogs might not have as good a chance of being adopted - up to the North. So we've worked with them before. And another organization, called GreaterGood.org, they are paying Wings of Rescue to do this, so it's a really neat collaboration."
Kloc said more dogs from Tampa are headed to the Chemung SPCA and the Toronto Humane Society. In all, a total of 180 dogs from hurricane-ravaged Florida are being sheltered up North.
"Our SPCA is one of the few in the country designated as an Emergency Placement Partner by the Humane Society of the United States. So it's something that we should take a lot of pride in," she said.
That means the Humane Society has given the SPCA its stamp of approval.
"They've vetted us, basically. They know we do everything responsibly," Kloc said. "Just like they are bringing animals up from other organizations in the South, they did the same thing down there. They want to make sure that we're legitimate, that everything is cohesive and run well."
Kloc said the southern dogs available locally already were spayed or neutered and were determined to be adoptable, so they are up for adoption as soon as they get comfortable with their new surroundings.
"What they can do is keep an eye on our website, YourSPCA.org, and I'm quite sure in the write-up if the dogs is from Florida or is from Texas, because this will be a process that will be going on for quite a few months now - we'll have dogs trickling in from the South, so we're helping everyone," Kloc said. "So definitely keep an eye on our website and we will note that."