Sunday, October 30, 2005

If you are new to this blog....

Here's the deal. This is my online diary of an incredible journey. You can read the postings below, just know they are in reverse date order (most recent first), so you could always start at the bottom and work your way up...or be like those people who read the ending of a book first. Whatever works, I'm just glad you are taking a minute to check this out. Ok, it will take more than a minute. I have happy pictures, and I have pictures you wouldn't want your kids to see, let alone viewing them yourself. Those are in the links off to the side. One of my most recent posts has a video link - I think you need Real Player to play it.

This adventure wouldn't be complete without my primary "team", people I have met, and I hope to call friends for a lifetime. It feels like it right now anyway...we're talking daily, and you don't even want to know how many emails transfer across the country in our attempts to keep communication about "our animals" going...anyhow, the follow-up care of the animals we worked with is a great deal because of Lacey, Humane Society Exec. Director in Dickson Tennessee. Lacey has no time for a blog, she's "technically challenged" by more than 200 emails a day, and a computer that must have been built in the 80's. She also has issues like spaying/neutering, and heartworm treatment first and foremost on her mind. Arnie & Robert, if you are reading this, your money has gone to these treatments. Thank you. Eric is the "leader" of our group, go to a link on the side for his blog connection - I can't say enough good things about this person. He has a heart of gold, and a true desire to help. Also gets about 200 emails a day many of them owners begging him to help them find their animals because they are "misplaced in the sytem". Get me offline if you want to know more about the major screw-up our animal welfare agencies made on the Katrina disaster. And then, there's Catherine, gifted writer and artist, her blog link is also on the side. You can read more about her there. She's a special lady, and thankfully, has some great connections with folks in LA who are willing to adopt, give $$, and all the other good stuff that's needed for a story like this. There are others too! Matt & Suzanne are both NOLA residents who helped with rescue, but also continue to be out contacts there helping distribute flyers, interview owners, etc. Matt couldn't thank us enough for coming to help--that was really nice to hear. Many others, but that's the primary team. Thanks for visiting!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

New video

This one almost found himself on a plane to Seattle while we searched for his owners...but Bruiser probably wouldn't have liked that very much. Thanks to Dogs Life Productions for filming the clip, and thanks to Eric for sharing.

This video will play in in Quicktime if you put it in your browser.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Another Match!

Up to the minute news on a Friday evening...another match is made and Marcel is reunited with his owner. Pictures to be posted soon!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Good video footage...

This was great- this is "Gracie" a Pitt bull terrier we pulled from a bathroom. This was one of the fortunate cases where we didn't have to go inside the house--I wish I could impart the smell to you though -the mold, the dampness, the stench. You see me looking off to one side and that's to grab my breath, because that room really stinks, and not just because of the dog. My thanks to Eric for filming, and to Don (technical genious who has saved my *** many a time) for helping get this on tape. We're hoping this might get used in a future documentary!

Friday, October 07, 2005

More amazing pictures from New Orleans

Thanks, Eric for sending these on - folks, these are mostly pictures of the devastation of the homes and city...only a few animal related. View these, and you wonder how on earth they will ever be able to re-build.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

10/5/05 Ongoing Updates

A FEW PICTURES ARE NOW AVAILABLE. Link off to the side called "PICTURES". Here's a start, stay tuned for more. Also, I encourage you to continue to go to Eric's blog, and I just added a new link off to the side for another person's blog on his experience with animal rescue efforts, David.

Monday, October 03, 2005

10/3/05 Sign this online petition!

those wanting to help animal recovery efforts in future disasters, please go here to sign the petition.

"Don't Abandon Pets in Disasters" petition at

10/3/05 Returning Home

It's very strange to be home...that's the sentiment I'm getting from other rescuers, and certainly my own feeling. There was still so much to be done, so many more opportunities for rescue. Thankfully, there are still people going to the area and the efforts will continue, but I'm hearing that it is becoming more difficult for the rescue operators because the police are beginning to tighten down on access to homes. A week ago, the day after Rita, I managed to talk my way into New Orleans without any difficulty - now police are stopping you if you do not have the appropriate credentials. Holding rescuers back means many more animal lives will not be saved. They are still out there, holding on with an incredible will to live.

So I wasn't really prepared for the psychological let down of returning home and returning to work, and getting "back to normal". I knew it was going to be an incredible experience, but I'm still not sure I know ultimately what this event will mean in my life. Was it a one-time shot, or can I do something with what I've learned, can I move toward something greater? Will it change the way I look at life, and the value I place on they way I live, work, the things I do, how I spend my time?

Overall, I'm exhausted. I miss the team of rescuers that I had been working with. I miss the feeling of making such a difference in peoples lives. I miss the dogs...and even the kitties. I know they are all in good hands, I just hope our efforts land them in the best possible scenario, and I pray that the majority of them can be reunited with their owners once they are able to care for their animals again.

I'm hearing reports of animals being euthanized without good reason. and there are confliciting stories as to when resuce efforts will end and what will happen to the animals saved. I guess that's something I have had a hard time conveying to everyone - how messed up the "system" is, how lousy the coordination is between the agencies, and how millions of dollars of donations were wasted. Go to for some hints as to the frustrations of dealing with the large national organizations (link to the side).

Keep reading back here-I'll be posting more because little brother Jeremy only posted the basics while I was on the road. Pictures and video footage hopefully will be added too.

I want everyone to know how an experience like this can affect your life--do something this extraordinary, and you can't help but experience other "shifts" in your foundation.

10/3/05 Sky - the big cat gets back to James!

hey everyone- Here's a message I received from one of the folks reunited with his cat:

Hi, we got Sky back to Little Rock ok. Can't tell you how much we appreciate your work in feeding/rescuing the left behing pets in New Orleans. My daughter has already put some comments on the NOLA web site. I hope the attaached picture comes through. I'm new to the digital picture thing. If it doesn't, send me your address and I'll mail you the picture. Again, thanks for getting Sky back to us. Buzz