In the News

Hurricane Sandy Cats Head to Sacramento

December 4, 2012

Cats Rescued in Superstorm Sandy Land at Sacramento Airport

Hurricane Sandy Cats

An extraordinary long distance animal rescue effort took place Wednesday, December 5, 2012, when cats orphaned by Superstorm Sandy arrived at the Sacramento International Airport to begin a new life. The seven felines were welcomed by volunteers from FieldHaven Feline Rescue, RedRover and the volunteer foster families who will care for the animals until permanent homes are found. This exceptional effort was launched after FieldHaven co-founder and New Jersey native Joy Smith's family member died in Superstorm Sandy - leaving two cats homeless and lost in the devastation.

"We knew we wanted to rescue the two orphaned cats, but we also knew that there were countless pets left stranded in the wake of Sandy - putting an enormous strain on all shelters in the Northeast region," said Joy Smith, co-founder of FieldHaven Feline Center. "FieldHaven serves as an emergency shelter in Placer County when needed so we knew from experience how overwhelming the sudden influx of traumatized animals can be for the rescuers. We had to find a way to help, so we reached out to the rescue folks in the trenches to identify seven cats we could fly to California to start a new life."

This heartwarming effort is made possible by a network of rescue organizations working together to save these special cats. S.A.V.E. volunteers waded through the devastation to locate and rescue countless pets in the aftermath of the storm. Sacramento based RedRover - an organization dedicated to helping animals in crisis - made an emergency grant to cover air transport costs. St. Huberts Animal Welfare Center in Madison, NJ - a leader in the effort to rescue animals in New Jersey - donated seven airline approved cat carriers. And FieldHaven Feline Rescue - a Lincoln, CA rescue organization - is organizing staff and foster families to care for these furry refugees until they are adopted in a loving home.

Additional Background:
Just days after Superstorm Sandy devastated the Jersey Shore, FieldHaven co-founder and New Jersey native Joy Smith was notified that a relative was among the casualties. As an experienced animal rescuer, Joy immediately hit the phones to try and locate the relative's two cats. Three days and about 100 calls later, Joy found the cats in the care of emergency foster volunteers. They had been rescued by the rescue organization Shore Area Volunteer Enterprise (S.A.V.E.) in Toms River, NJ. After hearing the heartbreaking reality of what was happening on the ground in the devastated areas, Joy realized that FieldHaven could make a real difference by taking not only Smokey and Blackie (the relative's cats) - but 5 additional felines.

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