Locating lost pets | SierraSun.com

Locating lost pets

Christine Stanley

Truckee resident Linda Holman and Sierraville resident Claudia Gibbens recently returned from Slidell, La., where they spent a week volunteering for Noah’s Wish, an animal rescue and shelter operation. “We helped care for over 400 dogs and 300 cats in a facility whose goal it is to reunite pets with their owners after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina,” Gibbens said. “It was just heart wrenching because the animals are so depressed and weak.” Volunteers from all over the United States and Canada have gathered to help care for the animals at the shelter, which, besides dogs and cats, included critters like tarantulas, a parrot, and a pot-belly pig, according to Gibbens. “It is interesting down there. Ninety-five percent of those animals aren’t fixed, and I would say that 50 percent of the animals are pit bulls. It’s quite an operation,” Gibbens said. “But we saw some incredible reunions. Sometimes the owners wouldn’t recognize their pets because they were so thin and beat up, but the looks on their faces were worth the heartbreak of being there.” Gibbens, who says she has always been a pet lover, was so distressed at the thought of leaving needy animals behind that she decided to bring six dogs and two kittens back to Truckee with her. Until she finds foster families for the animals, they are making themselves at home with her own pets, which include horses, five dogs, and six cats. “Being there was the most rewarding thing I have ever done,” she said. “And at least the six I saved now have a chance.”