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Wisconsinites are lending a helping hand to Hurricane Florence victims

Posted at 8:21 AM, Sep 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-24 06:19:11-04

WAUKESHA - Wisconsinites are lending a helping hand to Hurricane Florence victims. Saturday morning eight different Wisconsin animal shelters took in 96 dogs from shelters in North Carolina. Around the same time, Jennifer Clark, of Jen's Sweet Treats, and Amanda Malka, of Hungry Man Moving, are driving down NC to deliver more than 4,300 lbs of supplies. 

Clark says they collected two moving vans full of various supplies. Everything from diapers, Clorox wipes, to pet food is taking a 17 hour trip to North Carolina. 

"It was only right, I mean they need our help," says Clark,"Norfolk (Virginia) called us and said 'Can you go down into North Carolina?' When the storm took a turn, and we said 'We'll go wherever we're needed.' "

At Waukesha County Crites Field Airport Wings of Hope flew in close to 100 puppies and kittens from North Carolina. The effort was put on by Human Animal Welfare Society and Humane Society of the United States.  HAWS staff and volunteers help organize all the animal crates for each of the eight Wisconsin shelters. 

The adoptable pets are headed across the state. Some furry friends are going to: Humane Society of Jefferson County, Lakeshore Human Society, Elmbrook Humane Society, Washington County Humane Society, Watertown Humane Society, Green County Humane Society, Sheboygan Humane Society, and Wisconsin Humane Society. HAWS Executive Director Lynn Olenik says this move was necessary for all these animals. 

"So, that we can leave space for people who need temporary housing for their dogs in the flooded areas," says Olenik. 

Once the plane's wheels touched down, it's all hands on deck. Everyone is hard at work pulling crates off the plane, organizing the crates by shelter group, taking some dogs for walks, or putting crates in shelter vans. 

Helping pack up these furry friends is Jennifer Day, who is a North Carolina evacuee herself.

"I packed everything I could into a seven passenger mini van and drove 17 hours from North Carolina to here," says Day. 

Day, her three children, three dogs, three cats, and one husband came from Jacksonville, North Carolina to escape the Hurricane. As a native Wisconsin, she loves being home and being able to help where she can. But, Day admits she's worried about those who stayed behind. 

Day's mother is a HAWS volunteer and hearing about all the dogs and cats who were displaced from the state she just left, caused her to spring into action. 

"I have to do this, they are leaving everything they knew in North Carolina, shelter wise. To come where they know nothing. So it's a whole new environment for them as well," says Day

These furry friends should be ready for their forever homes by the end of next week says Olenik.