The Great Earthquake
The Northeastern side of Japan suffered a major earthquake and subsequent tsunami on March 11, 2011. Many areas, especially the coastal towns, have been literally washed away. Though it is true that incredible numbers of people are suffering greatly from the aftermath of this unprecedented disaster, we also need to think of our animal friends. Fortunately many, many people were able to escape with their animals, but just as many were washed ashore either with their people or not . . . There are not as many animals wandering through the disaster area as compared to the Great Hanshin Earthquake. Many of the animals did not survive the tsunami.
The local media reported a heart-rendering (sic) story of an old woman living alone with her poodle. She was soaked up to her neck in water for hours before the rescue squad found her. She had placed the poodle out of harms way by lifting her above her head. Alas her feeble arms could not withstand the cold and fatigue and when her hand slipped the old dog fell into the water. The old woman immediately scooped the dog back up again but according to her, after getting soaking wet the dog began to shake and did not survive the ordeal. I feel so guilty about not being able to save my poor dog . . . she was too old.
The local media also reported running into a man walking through the rubble. He said he was looking for his wife . . . and when the reporter looked again a small Chihuahua was peeking out from under his overcoat.
“I ran as fast as I could with him and the cat, but the cat got lost in the turmoil . . .” were his words. This little dog may be the only family he has left.
Currently the only official rescue work is being conducted by the disaster response team formed jointly by the Japan Veterinary Medical Association, the Japan Animal Welfare Society, the Japan Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, and the Japan Pet Care Association.
The latter groups are the largest animal welfare charities in the country and are connected to local veterinary associations. The aim of the team is to shelter as many animals as is possible near the area by recruiting the help of local vet clinics that are still functioning. They also need to prepare facilities and supplies for the great number of refugees flowing into neighboring areas as most people have fled without much preparation. This will be a long and uphill battle for everyone but the core team is determined to do what they can and to persevere till the end. Your help will be greatly appreciated. Below is the account number for the Japan Animal Welfare Society that has been put in charge of channeling foreign support for the animals here on behalf of the aforementioned disaster response team. We are sorry that the account is with a Japanese bank which may make it difficult for some to access. We are understaffed and have not been able as of yet to set up a payment system using web money. Once it is completed we will notify you immediately.
Thank you for your kindness and we thank you on behalf of the animals of Japan.
“The Great Earthquake” was written by Keiko Yamazaki, who is the ‘voice of TTouch’ in Japan. Literally. She has been the translator for TTouch classes from the beginning. She also does Lauren McCall’s rabbit workshops. Keiko is very well connected with animal welfare in Japan and has written many parts of the animal welfare laws.
Keiko sent this message to Lauren and to international organizations:
1. There are a large number of refugees fleeing the area and coming into either the metropolitan area by car and Rail where they are still running. The Tokyo Vet Med Association has agreed to open up their hospitals to foster the animals of these refugees . . . there are hundreds of them that have run with their animals. These refugees are also entering the Sea of Japan side as road access is better. Niigata prefecture is currently moving to open up their prefectural animal control center to house the pet of those people who cannot keep them for the moment . . here again
I hear there are more than a thousand people who have entered the prefecture since the quake. I am currently in the process of opening up a supply center in a local vet tech school so that these refugees may receive whatever they need for their animals.
2. The Ministry of the Environment is currently negotiating fiercely with the central government to secure space in the Official emergency supply vehicles . . . the only ones that will be allowed entry into the disaster area. This will most likely be possible; therefore the Japan Pet Care Association, one of the 3 biggest charities that has the largest floor space, will very soon be announced as the official destination of all charity supplies for animals. From here the supplies can be loaded onto the official vehicles for transport into the relevant areas. NO ONE else can get in to help . . . please make this clear. The housing and sheltering issues will come up in the not too-distant future but for now this is the ONLY way we as private citizens can help.
You Can Help the Animals of Japan
Make a Donation
Japan Animal Welfare Society has opened the following bank account to raise funds for supporting activities for animals in afflicted areas. [Please check with your bank because as of 3-17-11, banks are waiving wire transfer fees to Japan right now.]
Address: 7-15-7 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan Zip code 106-0032
Branch # 053
Swift code MHBKJPJT
Ordinary Account # 2814596
Name of account holder: Japan Animal Welfare Society
Other organizations are accepting donations:
World Society for the Protection of Animals – Animal Disaster Fund
Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support
HEART Tokushima – HEART Shelter Fund
Will you take a moment to contribute what you can to help the Japanese people and their animals? Your help will be greatly appreciated.
- Tips for helping animals in Japan (yellowlabradors.wordpress.com)
- Japan Rescuers Pull Together To Save Pets (treehugger.com)
- Japan’s Animal Welfare (dogleadermysteries.com)
- Animal welfare groups race to rescue Japan’s abandoned pets (cnn.com)
- How To Help Animals in Japan (nithyapari.wordpress.com)
- Japanese Human and Animal Welfare (dogleadermysteries.com)