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  • Writer's pictureFlorida Urgent Rescue

Winter Storm Elliot Rescue Mission

Updated: Mar 3, 2023

๐—ช๐—ต๐—ถ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—น๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜‚๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ผ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด, ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—™๐—น๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ ๐—จ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜ ๐—ฅ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ฐ๐˜‚๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—บ ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐˜€ ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ก๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜ ๐—™๐—น๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ด๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—ฟ๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—น ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—น๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—˜๐—น๐—น๐—ถ๐—ผ๐˜๐˜ ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ด๐—ต๐˜ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐˜๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—น๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—ณ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐˜‡๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด.

The Union County shelter has 14 outdoor kennels on the grounds of the prison, with plywood boxes and straw to try to keep them warm. With the coldest Christmas in 30 years on the way, we knew we couldn't leave the dogs outside in the freezing weather.

๐—ฆ๐—ฐ๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ฏ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—š๐—ฒ๐˜ ๐——๐—ผ๐—ด๐˜€ ๐—œ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜€ ๐—•๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—™๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐˜‡๐—ฒ This is a very tough time of year in animal rescue, as fosters go on vacation, boarding facilities are all full, and too many people dump their dogs in shelters. We already had several fosters out of town, and we spent a lot of time lining up places for them to go. Then came Elliot. With options limited and the storm approaching, we worked out a plan to move some dogs to boarding and others to foster homes or temp fosters.

Alexis, Robert and Susan went to meet dogs at the Union and Bradford shelters, and met 3 dogs who came in together. Alexis and Robert offered to foster Lizzie, but fell in love with the senior Bessie and Buddy. We didn't have fosters for all three, though. They got Lizzie and Bessie out, but couldn't stop thinking about Buddy who was left behind. Alexis continued to network, and Marlene Ritter offered to foster Buddy (now Oakley).

During the same trip, they met Little Bear, a dog who came into the shelter when his owner died, and her Dad was unable to care for him. Alexis's sister-in-law Gail Gammons and her partner Mike Baird offered to foster him. When they went back this morning, they scrambled and Alfie went to Courtney Noble temporarily, and will go his new foster Amanda Monaghan,

While all this was going on, we had two more curve balls. Brianna, the Union County ACO, found a stray hound who was very lethargic, so she rushed her to Macclenny vet. They held her overnight, but were closing today for the holiday, so we scrambled to get a transport to take her to Palm Valley Veterinary Center.

The other curve ball was Lizzie started coughing, so Alexis and Robert had to scramble to get her into the vet quickly. She now has to be quarantined from the other dogs for 10 days.

โ€” Summerlyn stayed late, and came in today when the shelter was closed, and even brought her own dogs in to โ€˜dog testโ€™ a dog we wanted to get out.

โ€” The same story was taking place in Union County. Brianna made a special trip to the vet to get dogs vaccinated do go to boarding, and she came in when the shelter was closed to accommodate our schedule.

โ€” Robin Kanter-Norden offered to take Jynx into SAFE Pet Rescue.

โ€” Walt and Shelli Shay have helped in every emergency, but they are out of town. They still offered to let us use their heated garage as a temporary boarding location. Valerie and Brad Losego picked up walk-in kennels from Tractor Supply, and assembled them in the Shay's garage.

โ€” Shannon Louise Smith, the owner of Beach Bark, offered to foster Kirby (aka Roy, Jr). She even drove out to Lake Butler to pick him up. He's already getting along famously with her pack.

โ€” Shannon Oetting transported Gavin and Jynx from the Union County shelter back to the Shay's house in Mandarin.

โ€” Two previous FUR adopters also volunteered to help. Robyn Witt, who fostered and adopted our senior dog Tyson, met Sharon in Mandarin, and she transported Jynx to SAFE Pet Rescue in St. Augustine. Misty Exley, who manages Pet Paradise at Jax Airport, adopted our blind dog Seymour. Misty drove to Macclenny Vet to pick up Maci, the sick hound, and bring her to Palm Valley Veterinary Center.

โ€” Carrie Ann-Keane and Mariah Baker were both on standby, but we had other drivers available.

โ€” Dr. Mack, Allison, and the staff at Palm Valley once again saved the day, boarding Ellie, and squeezing Maci into the schedule to get her checked out.

โ€” Kelly Thomas transported Oswald, the Great Dane/Malinois, from Bradford County his new FUR foster home with Michelle Buschmire

โ€” Caroline Cozens went to the shelter in Union County to transport Kenny, who she is temp fostering.

โ€” Lynda Gridley, Lori DeLong, Courtney Noble, Valerie Noble and Betsy Marquez volunteered to take shifts caring for the dogs at the Shay's house.

โ€” Jana Andrews, Valerie Losego, Susan Merrill were busy behind the scenes working with potential adopters and fosters. At the same time, Emily McDonald and Kelly McDade were getting all the medical records organized, entered, and sent to the appropriate places. Michelle Waczkowski was scheduling spay/neuters, and Mary Merrill was busy taking working with trainers on a dog in training. Basically all the million and one other things we need to deal with every day to keep FUR running.

Thanks to the dedicated rescuers, 13 dogs are out of rural shelters, either in foster homes, temporary fosters or boarding.

๐—™๐—จ๐—ฅ ๐—ฝ๐˜‚๐—น๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐Ÿด ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ด๐˜€ ๐—ณ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—บ ๐—จ๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—•๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ ๐˜€๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—น๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€, ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ธ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ผ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ด๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ถ๐—ฟ ๐—ต๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐˜€: โ€” Bessie (fostered by Lisa Varon and her daughters Zoe and Katie) and Lizzie (fostered by Robert and Alexis Gammon) โ€” Oakley (aka Buddy) (fostered by Marelene Ritter) โ€” Little Bear (fostered by Alexis's sister-in-law Gail Gammon and Mike Baird) โ€” Oswald is fostered by Michelle Buschmire โ€” Alfie is temp fostered by Courtney Noble, and will go to his new foster Amanda Monaghan โ€” Kirby (Roy Jr.) is fostered by Shannon Smith โ€” Pixie, the Chiweenie, is fostered by Mercia and Tom Noble

๐Ÿฐ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ด๐˜€ ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ง๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ฝ ๐—™๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€/๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด (๐—™๐—ผ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜€ ๐˜€๐˜๐—ถ๐—น๐—น ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ!): โ€” Ellie is boarding at Palm Valley โ€” Gavin and Maci are at Hotel Shay โ€” Kenny is with Caroline Cozens

๐Ÿญ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ด (๐—๐˜†๐—ป๐˜…) ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฆ๐—”๐—™๐—˜ ๐—ฃ๐—ฒ๐˜ ๐—ฅ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ฐ๐˜‚๐—ฒ

๐—™๐—จ๐—ฅ ๐—จ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜ ๐—ง๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜€๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐˜ ๐—ฃ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ด๐—ฟ๐—ฎ๐—บ In addition to running a foster-based rescue, the FUR Urgent Transport program helps animals in natural disasters and other emergencies. FUR has done disaster relief missions to help animals in danger during several hurricanes and disasters, in addition to completing multiple rescue missions on the ground in Ukraine. FUR rescued 171 animals during Hurricanes Ian and Nicole. The problem here is similar. It's a different weather event, but the danger to animals is just as severe.

Trying to plan and organize rescue missions is always challenging, and we are eternally grateful to all the selfless people who step up to help in times of trouble. Every time we have to stay flexible and come up with a plan on the go. With people and animals moving in multiple directions, it's not for the faint of heart. At the end of the day, we are grateful to have so many committed people working side by side to help save lives.

We are also thankful and relieved that these animals are now safely indoors before the freeze. A Huge "Thank You" to everyone who gave up your time during the holidays to keep these sweet pups safe! To Foster: To Adopt: To Donate: โ€” Credit Card: โ€” Venmo: @FloridaUrgentRescue โ€” PayPal: โ€” CashApp: $FloridaUrgentRescue โ€” Mail: Florida Urgent Rescue 7643 Gate Parkway #104-27 Jacksonville, FL 32256



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