Rescue animals in our city are in a crisis. Etosha, one of the oldest rescues in South Central Texas, has lost its food supply. For 12 years Etosha relied on donations from Wal-Mart for 95 percent of the food for the hundreds of animals that they rescue and re-home from the center every year.
As of this writing, Etosha has only one more day’s food to feed the 146 dogs and 40 cats currently in its care. Luckily, Petie the horse has been adopted!
Robin visited Etosha today and met lovely, healthy basset hounds, beagles, blood hounds, labs and all kinds of other dogs. It’s hard to imagine that the men who made the decision to end the donation could take the food out of their mouths. What will become of Emma and Maybelline? Two 15-year-old girls that have found sanctuary in the Etosha office during our colder-than-usual winter? Or Limo, a wonderful basset hound who accompanied Robin on the path back to the office?
Wal-Mart gave Etosha no warning that the food supply was going to stop, so when the food runs out, there’s no Plan B in place for another source. It takes a minimum of 2,500 pounds per month to feed all of the animals. That’s about 65 bags of dog food. The volunteers at Etosha told Robin that they can get 40 bags for $1000, so that’s a cost of about $1500 per month.
Please help Etosha keep helping animals.
Right now, they need donations of money to buy food to feed the dogs and cats. Your donation will keep their tummies full.
In the long term, Etosha volunteers are frantically searching for foundations that make grants to animal rescue organizations. Robin and her students are going to help with the research. If you have information about foundations please pass it on to us!
Broad effects of the sudden end of the Wal-Mart food donation
The loss of the food donation affects all of Etosha’s programs that have been vital to animals in need in our area since the 1980s. Without food donations, Etosha may not be able to continue the important work that is so necessary in our county and surrounding counties.
Etosha has cancelled it’s low-cost spay/neuter program for the foreseeable future because of the need to buy food. This program has made possible the sterilization of about 5,000 dogs and cats in our county and neighboring counties since 2009.
Etosha has shared food with smaller local rescues and even the city animal services, too. Those organizations will also have to find the money to pay for food.
Rescues have really started to make a difference for dogs here. In fact, we were celebrating progress in the live-release rate at our county dog pound just last week. Etosha provides one of the only possibilities for support for people who want to help feral cats in our area. Without Etosha, the steps we’ve made will all be erased.
We need to find food for Etosha’s animals and find it quickly.
Limo is pictured above in a photo found on Etosha’s website.