Humane Society of Sarasota County opens doors to animals from Louisiana

Pets rescued from Hurricane Ida hope to find new homes in Sarasota

Image from the Humane Society of Sarasota website

In the aftermath of Hurricane Ida, the Humane Society of Sarasota County (HSSC) is aiding animal shelters in Louisiana whose facilities were damaged by the Category 4 storm, the nonprofit has announced.

“The damage caused by Hurricane Ida left many animal shelters in Louisiana struggling to provide care to the animals that survived the storm,” said Anna Gonce, executive director of HSSC, in a news release. “We are grateful to have the space and resources right now to help these animals. Those of us on the Gulf Coast have to support each other,” she added in the release. “The next time, it could be us asking for help.”

HSSC recently completed an extensive renovation project that doubled its facility space, the release notes. Thus, HSSC can shelter, treat and find homes for 50% more animals, the release points out.

HSSC was making room for at least 20 cats and dogs that were expected to arrive on a chartered flight over Labor Day weekend, the release says. The animals were coming from shelters left without electricity, “making it almost impossible to care for animals that lost their homes in the storm,” the release says.

In a Sept. 9 email blast, the nonprofit reported that it had received a total of 24 dogs and cats.

Images courtesy Humane Society of Sarasota County

“They will not know how harrowing their journey has been, but there is no doubt they have been scared and confused and in need of a sense of stability and plain old TLC,” the email said. “This is what you do best, Suncoast.”

“Our goal is to transition as many of these animals straight into foster care so they don’t have to go into one more kennel,” the email adds. “To learn more, click here fostering or email for more details.”

Further, the email says, “The cats and kittens will need snugglers and the dogs will need walkers. To learn more, click here volunteering and complete the volunteer application.”

“HSSC is a no-kill organization and our commitment to no-kill extends beyond the walls of our shelter,” Gonce added in the news release. “We are so grateful to the Sarasota community for supporting our capital campaign drive so we could expand our lifesaving work. We are looking forward to welcoming these little survivors to HSSC and giving them the care they need.”

To view a list of pets and HSSC residents available for adoption, visit