Helping Irma’s Victims

Would you like to help animals impacted by Hurricane Irma? A donation to JHS will go a long way in helping animals not just in Jacksonville, but in effected areas all over our state.

Our Hurricane Irma Story:

Like many of you, JHS was glued to the spaghetti models projecting Hurricane Irma’s path last week. We watched what happened in Houston with Hurricane Harvey and knew that evacuating our animals ahead of a major storm would be best, not only for their safety but also for animals who would need a place to go after the hurricane.

We moved into our new building on September 5th and evacuated animals on the 6th! We were able to remain open and respond to our community through the 9th. Hurricane Irma hit Jacksonville on the morning on September 11th, and at 6 p.m. that same day, JHS received 59 evacuees from Clay County Animal Control after major flooding destroyed their shelter.

Despite our power being out, thanks to our donors, volunteers and staff, we were able to safely house the Clay County animals who literally swam to safety. Having access to a portion of the new shelter was a lifesaver – and the empty kennels were exactly what our community needed. JHS was the only shelter open for intake of injured or abandoned animals and providing assistance to families the very next day and for several days after the storm.

JHS Staff Members Kristy Fowler, Nikki Harris and Dr. Stan Hill move cats and kittens to safety after the flooding of Clay County Animal Care and Control.

On Saturday, September 16th, in collaboration with the Charleston Animal Society, JHS was able to send 145 dogs and cats to new homes in South Carolina. We are planning for a new transfer of animals from Southern Florida this week.

JHS did have some down trees and a roof leak in the hospital, but otherwise we did not sustain structural damage. We did, however, have to cancel our major fundraising event, Toast to the Animals, which was scheduled to take place four days after Irma in order to focus on recovery efforts. This event traditionally raises more than $150,000 for our medical fund every year.

None of this life-saving work would be possible with the support of our donors, volunteers, foster parents and friends. Generosity breeds joy – before, during and after a hurricane!

JHS Adoption Counselor Cole Herrin walks Beaux the beagle to a kennel in the new JHS building after his ride from Clay County’s flooded shelter.

How can you help? JHS still needs $4 million to cover the costs of the new building and additional costs incurred processing the animals received right before and immediately following the hurricane. Any gift is much appreciated! Click here to donate  or call 904-493-4566.

Related Links:

Families in Need – JHS Community Resource Center

Pets and Disaster Prep – Plan Ahead

JHS Wish List – Ship Right to Our Door