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News :: Environment
State of Louisiana blocks animal rescue while thousands of pets face starvation
11 Nov 2005
The State of Louisiana is blocking efforts
to rescue starving animals
CONTACT: Claire Davis
(435) 899-1231
KatrinaCatRescue (at)

State of Louisiana blocks animal rescue while thousands of pets face
starvation in New Orleans

Bogalusa, Louisiana, November 8, 2005‹Two animal rescue groups are issuing a
call for the state of Louisiana to stop blocking attempts to save the
thousands of sick, injured, and traumatized dogs and cats who still wander
the streets of New Orleans.

The state has announced that the Hurricane Katrina rescue phase is over.
Out-of-state veterinarians are banned from volunteering their services on
behalf of the animals of greater New Orleans. Rescuers have been threatened
with arrest if they attempt to give food and water to animals in Orleans
Parish. Outside rescue groups are told they should turn all operations over
to local authorities and leave the state.

Meanwhile, the pets who survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath are
dying on the streets ­sometimes right next to food and water bowls that the
handful of remaining rescuers couldn¹t fill in time. and Alley Cat Allies (
) are calling for the state to reverse its course
and accept outside help in the form of veterinarians and more volunteers.

³We are literally seeing animals on the streets starving to death,² says
Jane Garrison, director of, one of a handful of
rescue organizations still in the city. ³We need more volunteers to feed and
water the thousands of traumatized animals still on the streets, we need to
keep trapping animals so we can reunite them with their guardians, and we
need a massive spay/neuter program.²

Garrison coordinated the animal rescue program for six weeks as a volunteer
for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). Since HSUS pulled out
October 1st, she has been running her own program. With a steadily dwindling
force of volunteers, Garrison races against time trying to provide food and
water at more than 2,000 sites in the New Orleans area, as well as fielding
a constant stream of owner rescue requests.

³Many of these animals are people¹s companions who escaped their homes when
doors and windows blew open. It would be completely unethical to allow them
to die on the streets,² she says. The state claims that local authorities
can handle the problem, but rescuers on the ground know this is not the
case. One of the hardest hit areas, St. Bernard Parish, has no active animal
control agency or functioning animal shelter. The Louisiana SPCA, in charge
of animal control in Orleans Parish, does not have anywhere close to the
staff, space, or resources required to address a problem of this magnitude.

As bad as the situation is now, in a few months it will be even worse.
Despite the horrific conditions, the dogs and cats on the streets are still
breeding, and rescuers are starting to see puppies and kittens born after
Katrina. Statistics show that one unspayed female cat and her offspring can
produce more than 59,000 cats in five years.

³If the state government doesn¹t allow us to feed, treat, and find homes for
the thousands of animals struggling to survive now, it is in for a rude
awakening the beginning of next year,² says Becky Robinson, national
director of Alley Cat Allies (ACA). ³The number of free-roaming cats and
dogs will be devastating.²

ACA, a national cat advocacy group now running a cat rescue operation from a
base in Bogalusa, Louisiana, has plans for an immediate, large-scale
spay/neuter program for the street cats of New Orleans. This program
requires the services of about a dozen veterinarians experienced with
high-volume surgery. Many out-of-state vets have offered their services,
free of charge.

But the state of Louisiana is standing in the way. Louisiana Governor
Kathleen Blanco, acting on advice from Assistant State Veterinarian Martha
Littlefield, has refused to extend an executive order giving out-of-state
veterinarians permission to practice in Louisiana. That order expired
October 25. Any out-of-state vet practicing in the area now would do so at
the risk of jail time and thousands of dollars in fines.

Despite the state¹s claims that local veterinarians can fulfill the need,
ACA has been unable to find local vets who can provide consistent care for
the cats housed at its temporary shelter, let alone enough to conduct the
type of large-scale spay/neuter program that is so desperately needed.

³This nation¹s animal rescue community can help Louisiana meet this crisis
if the state will simply acknowledge the problem still exists and allow us
to work,² Robinson says. ³This is not only humane and ethical; it is in
everyone¹s best interest.²

For more information, please contact Claire Davis at (435) 899-1231 or
KatrinaCatRescue (at), or visit


Our Animal and Earth Liberation brothers and sisters need your support!
Remember, writing a letter takes 10 minutes of your time, but it touches the hearts of those who have put their freedom on the line in defense of our animal companions and mother Earth, and have dared to stand up against the repressive state that upholds the status-quo of animal torture, abuse, and environmental devastation.
Write to these political prisoners:

Jon Ablewhite TB4885, HMP Birmingham, Winson Green Road, Birmingham B18 4AS, England. Animal rights activist charged with blackmail over an incident involving a farm involved with the breeding of guinea pigs for vivisection.

Tre Arrow, CS #05850722, Vancouver Island Regional, Correction Center, 4216 Wilkinson Rd., Victoria, BC V8Z 5B2, CANADA. On remand accused of involvement with an arson on logging trucks and an arson on vehicles owned by a sand & gravel company. Both arsons occurred in the USA.

Dave Blenkinsop EM7899, HMP Rye Hill, Onley, Warwickshire, CV23 8AN, England. Serving 10 years. 1) Three years for a stave attack on the Managing Director of HLS. 2) 18 months for rescuing 600 guinea pigs from a lab supplier. 3) 5Þ years for planting incendiary devices under abattoir vehicles.

Josh Demmitt, 12314-081, PO Box 6000, Federal Prison Camp, Sheridan, OR 97378, USA. Serving 30 months for an arson on a University animal testing facility. Due for release 24/04/06.

Harjit Singh Gill, 148118-097, 111 Taylor St., San Francisco, CA 94102, USA. Serving 6 months in a half-way house for lying to a Grand Jury investigating two ALF arsons against McDonalds restaurants.

Sarah Gisborne, LT5393, HMP Cookham Wood, Rochester, Kent, ME1 3LU, England. Serving 6Þ years for conspiracy to cause criminal damage following the damaging of 8 vehicles owned by people linked to Huntingdon Life Science.

Aaron Linas, 38448083, FMC, PO Box 1600, Butner, NC 27509, USA. Serving time for a series of ELF actions against a number of targets including McDonalds & Burger King; urban sprawl; the construction industry; and an SUV dealership.

Jeffrey Luers, #13797671, OSP, 2605 State St. Salem, OR 97310, USA. Serving 22 years & 8 months for arson on a car dealership & attempted arson of an oil truck.

Keith Mann KJ9365, HMP Guys Marsh, Shaftesbury, Dorset, SP7 0AH, England. Serving 18 months for two separate offences. A) Twelve months for releasing 695 mice from an animal torture laboratory. B) Six months for contempt of court after he threatened a director of the animal torture lab as he left court.

Patty Mark, c/o Animal Liberation Victoria, 394 Russell Street, Melbourne 3000, Australia. Serving 17 days for non-payment of fines, which were imposed following an open animal rescue at a battery hen farm.

Christopher McIntosh 30512-013, FDC Seatac, Federal Detention Center, P.O. BOX 13900, Seattle, WA 98198, USA. On remand accused of a joint ELF/ALF arson attack on a McDonalds.

John Smith TB4887, HMP Birmingham, Winson Green Road, Birmingham B18 4AS, England. Animal rights activist charged with blackmail over an incident involving a farm involved with the breeding of guinea pigs for vivisection.

Kerry Whitburn TB4886, HMP Birmingham, Winson Green Road, Birmingham B18 4AS, England. Animal rights activist charged with blackmail over an incident involving a farm involved with the breeding of guinea pigs for vivisection.

Peter Young #223341, Dane County Jail, 115 West Doty St, Madison, WI 53703, USA. On remand accused of releasing mink from a fur farm.

(Keep in mind, the letters you write will be reviewed by prison officials beforehand, so don't write anything of sensitive nature. For tips on how to write to prisoners, go to

(Dear Boston IMC.. please add an animal
rights category.. )
See also:

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Re: State of Louisiana blocks animal rescue while thousands of pets face starvation
11 Nov 2005
Typical of a state run by the Democrats to allow someting simple to get bogged down in bureaucracy.