A Calgary animal society has been inundated with bills in the aftermath of last year's devastating floods in southern Alberta.
Oops-a-Dazy Rescue and Sanctuary Society helped house, feed and provided veterinary assistance to animals caught in the disaster. Now they're facing a tsunami of debt, and hope Calgarians will help them in their time of need.
"The night of the floods started out as pretty much a disaster" volunteer Debra Michel recalled this week. "We were supposed to have a big fundraiser that night and we had to cancel and get out to help many, many dogs that were out.
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Another volunteer, Christine Campbell, said it's all "just a blur for me, I don't think I slept for three weeks between going out on rescues, answering phone calls, answering emails trying to madly arrange foster homes."
It wasn't just shelter the animals needed, the ferocity of the flooding had injured many animals.
"We had lots of animals that we believe had been hit by debris or maybe trapped in the flood waters, as well as lots of parasites and pathogens that were transmitted by the flood waters, so we saw exponential growth in our vet bills and we ended the year with a $26,000 loss as a result of the floods."
That kind of loss can doom a non-profit society like Oops-a-Dazy, and the veterinary bills are only part of the problem. It has a care facility east of town housing 300 animals, not all flood victims.
"There were some animals that were able to go home after a week or two weeks after people were allowed back into their homes, but for some of those animals, they are still with us, their families are still rebuilding."
Oops-a Dazy holds weekly adoption clinics at local Petsmart stores. Calgarians can help lighten their debt by going to their website or come down to the Petsmart across from Chinook centre any Saturday and think about adopting a furry friend.