On May 12, 2008, an earthquake measuring 8.0Mw on the Richter scale hit China, claiming the lives of over 69,000 people and over 12 million animal lives. Countless dogs and cats are homeless, injured, and starving. Drinking water is polluted and there is a critical need for water pumps. Reportedly, there are some 30,000 pet dogs in one province alone, many of them now homeless.
Since the dog cull has been in effect, it is questionable if the government will allow rescue efforts to take place. Nevertheless, rescuers and volunteers are doing all they can to save as many animals as possible or at least offer them some relief amidst so much suffering. There is a desperate need for food for companion animals, and livestock feed, not to mention vaccines and other medications.
Various international agencies are helping in the disaster areas, including Chinese animal organizations; which are greatly under funded. When rescue efforts are over, Chinese animal groups will continue to help the animals rescued as a result of this tragedy.
The Misha Foundation (a federal, non-profit charity) has been working with several groups of animal caring people in Beijing and Shanghai. These groups dedicate their spare time and whatever little money they have to save abandoned animals. It is in great part, thanks to them, that animals in their areas have experienced care and compassion.
For more information on the Misha Foundation and how to help animals in need in China, please visit their website www.people4chineseanimals.org and check out their People 4 Chinese Animals project.