The veterinary community’s response to Hurricane Harvey has been tremendous, with hundreds of veterinarians and support staff volunteering their services in areas impacted by the storm. However, we have also heard from veterinarians who would like to help, but are unable to travel to the affected areas and would like to know about other opportunities to contribute. With the assistance of the Houston Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Houston SPCA), TVMA & TVMF are pleased to announce one such opportunity—Operation Reunite. Operation Reunite will allow you to make a meaningful difference in the lives of pets and pet owners impacted by Harvey.
The mission of the program is to establish a network of veterinary clinics that, with the assistance of their clients, will provide foster care to pets displaced by the disaster. The ultimate goal is to return as many of these animals to their owners within 45 days of the animal being delivered for fostering.
The volunteer process for veterinarians is very simple:
- Contact TVMA and let us know that you would like to participate. You will be asked to provide the following information: Name of Clinic; Key Contact; Phone Number; Physical Address; Email Address; and Capacity (species, size and number of animals that can be housed).
- Make your clients aware of this opportunity to foster the animals you have requested and have those interested agree to foster the animal(s) for 45 days or until the owner claims the animal(s), whichever comes first.
- TVMA will share your information with the Houston SPCA. The Houston SPCA will transport those animals that meet your requirements to your clinic.
- Upon receipt of the animal(s), you will contact the person agreeing to foster the animal(s) and have that person come to your clinic to pick up the animal(s).
- You will be responsible for providing veterinary care to the foster animal(s) during the 45 day period, but the Texas Veterinary Medical Foundation (TVMF) has funds available to reimburse you for any supplies used to treat the animal(s). TVMF will also provide funds to the person fostering the animal(s) to help offset their expenses.
- Once the original owner notifies the Houston SPCA that they have identified their pet through the online animal database, you will facilitate the reunification between the pet and the owner at your clinic.
- Final disposition of the fostered animal(s) will be communicated to the Houston SPCA. If an animal is not claimed at the end of the 45 days, you will attempt to rehome the animal.
TVMA, TVMF and Houston SPCA are very excited about this new program, but know that its success really depends on the willingness of veterinarians to participate. Please help make a difference in the lives of these animals and their owners by volunteering for Operation Reunite. Call the TVMA office today at 512-452-4224 and let the person answering know that you want to volunteer for Operation Reunite. Please contact TVMA/TVMF Executive Director, Chris Copeland, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org should you have any questions.