How you can help animals impacted by Hurricane Harvey. In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, many are looking for ways that they can help the people and animals affected. Here’s how you can help during this urgent time:

August 30, 2017

We've all seen photos of animals being abandoned in Texas due to hurricane Harvey... tied to poles.. left behind in crates on porches with water rising... we've also seen photos of good samartians going out of their way to rescue these animals and photos of loyal pet owners walking through high waters with pets in hand... and I'm sure lots of people are wondering HOW they can help.

The SPCA of Texas is taking in hundreds of animals transferred from shelters on the coast who aren’t safe where they are right now. You can donate to the organization to help defray the costs—or you can open your home and foster a displaced animal until it can be reunited with its owner.

If you’re in Austin and want to work with a local org, Austin Pets Alive! is doing similar work, and has similar needs—cash, to keep operating, and volunteers to foster animals. They can also use certain pet supplies: large plastic or metal bins with lids to store food, leashes and collars, cat litter, large brooms, cat-specific beds, and liquid laundry soap. (The organization says they’re good on crates and pet food now, and don’t have much space to store them.

So how can you help? Let me go over TWO ORGANIZATIONS that you can assist with help. 



1. Funding. Thanks to the overwhelming amount of in-kind donations over the past few days, the SPCA and Austin Pets Alive have had so many donations brought to them that they are running out of room to store them. However, they know that they will continue to need more and more supplies as they care for animals over the next few weeks. By providing a financial donation, you will allow them to ensure that they can purchase the supplies that they need, when they need them. It will also help them provide the best possible care for the new animals that they are taking in, as the intake process alone will cost over $20,000.

The care for these animals doesn’t stop once the hurricane is over, and they are in dire need of financial support to continue care for all of their new pups and cats. 

2. Fosters. Again, thanks to an overwhelming response, they have changing foster needs! They are currently only looking for fosters able to keep animals through adoption.

Unfortunately, they are no longer able to accept short-term fosters as we will need to find space for those animals once the short-term fostering ends.  As a foster through to adoption, you can expect to have an animal from 2-4 weeks for dogs and 4-6 weeks for cats and will be asked to meet with potential adopters, help take photos of the animal, etc. Due to the outpouring of donations they will be able to provide you with crates, beds, food and medical care while supplies last.


  • Homes with no cat/no children/no additional dogs (for current TLAC dogs)
    • UPDATE: They no longer have any small dogs or puppies, and they are nearly out of dog-friendly dogs! If your household can accept a large dog that needs to be an only pup at home, please e-mail


  • Cats with ringworm (especially as our ringworm ward is prone to flooding, so they need to get them into homes!)
  • FelV cats – these sweeties require pretty easy care, but no other cats in the household. Other animals are completely fine.

They expect to need some medical fosters for both cats and dogs over the coming week.

3. In-Kind Donations. If possible, they deeply appreciate any financial donations at this time. Thanks to the amazing outpouring of donations they have received over the past few days they are running out of room to store new donations. However, they know that they will continue to need supplies as they rescue more animals affected by the storm. A financial donation allows them to continue to buy more supplies as we need them, and best serve the animals.

To support the significant intake in new animals, below is AUSTIN PETS ALIVE UPDATED list of current needs! 

Here are top current needs for Austin Pets Alive:

Top Current Needs:

  1. Cat Litter – Clumping preferred, but non-clumping needed, as well.
  2. Martingale Collars (medium)
  3. Tarps

Other important needs include: 

  • Dog Treats* – Chew Toys/Rawhides, Treat Logs, Peanut Butter and Milk Bones for Kongs for all of our stressed and crated pups!
  • Paper or Styrafoam Bowls* – For feeding cats.
  • Kitten and Puppy Formula
  • Flea + Tick Prevention
  • Canned Wet Food and Tuna – Now only needed for cats!
  • Litter Boxes – 12×10″ or smaller
  • Large Metal Dog Bowls
  • Large Trash Bags
  • Updated Cleaning Supplies List – Bleach, paper towels, general purpose cleaner, latex gloves, dish soap, sponges.


4. Volunteers. There are two ways you can help – sign up as a regular, long term volunteer or donate your time as an emergency, short term volunteer.  Short term volunteers must be 18+ years of age and will not be able to handle animals. Please do not go to the shelter without already being a registered volunteer, as they will not be able to accept your help. 

5. Adoptions. With nearly every pet rescued from the hurricane in short-term foster, they will very quickly need to shift their focus to adoptions. If you or someone you know has been looking to add a furry family member, now is the perfect time. All available cats and dogs are listed on our website.





As the organization prepares to deploy disaster response efforts in North Texas to assist the Gulf Coast, support for this effort and for all of our programs and services is critical. Please consider making a financial donation at or make an in-kind donation. The supplies most needed are cat litter, litter boxes, towels, blankets, large wire crates, toys, treats, pet beds, newspaper and gas gift cards. In-kind donations can be brought to the SPCA of Texas' Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center in Dallas or the SPCA of Texas' Russell H. Perry Animal Care Center in McKinney.

Additionally, the SPCA of Texas is putting out a call for foster homes to help us care for the animals already in our shelters and those coming from the Gulf Coast. It is easy to sign up at

The animals that have been transferred to the SPCA of Texas will be evaluated upon their arrival by SPCA of Texas’ medical and behavior teams and will receive all the care they need. The SPCA of Texas hopes to place them up for adoption in the coming days and weeks. The SPCA of Texas encourages families interested in adding a pet to their home to consider adopting now. Dog and cat adoptions are $25 through September 3rd. By adopting a pet from the SPCA of Texas, you will save that animals' life as well as open up space for another homeless pet in need. To see all pets the SPCA of Texas has available for adoption, please visit

To learn more about the SPCA of Texas, to help the SPCA of Texas fund future efforts like this and to support the SPCA of Texas' other programs and services, please visit or call 214-742-7722.




ALSO: HSUS Animal Rescue

The HSUS Animal Rescue Team is deployed in Texas, where they are working with local officials to transport, rescue and care for animals. Your support is urgently needed: both so they can help during this emergency, and so they can be there at a moment’s notice when future disasters strike. MAKE A DONATION HERE