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September 7, 2011

The HSUS and and ASPCA to Provide Emergency Funds to N.J. Horse Sanctuary

32 horses without adequate shelter or food due to flooding following Tropical Storm Irene

The Humane Society of the United States and the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) have pledged to provide $5,000 in financial assistance to Rivers Edge Horse Rescue and Sanctuary in Newton, N.J.  The sanctuary requested the assistance to help care for 32 horses that no longer have adequate shelter or food as a result of damage to the facility by Tropical Storm Irene and are unable to be moved until the water recedes. 

“Thankfully none of the horses have thrush or any injuries, but we want to ensure their continued safety and well-being by providing financial assistance for their most pressing needs– hay and temporary shelter,” said Kathleen Schatzmann, N.J. state director for The HSUS.

“The ASPCA is committed to helping animals impacted by Tropical Storm Irene,” said Matt Bershadker, senior vice president of ASPCA Anti-Cruelty. “We will continue to do everything we can to help these horses and urge other New Jersey residents to develop an emergency plan in advance to keep their families and pets safe as hurricane season reaches its height.”

Rivers Edge is currently home to the 32 horses, 20 cats, seven dogs, and four goats. In the aftermath of Tropical Storm Irene, residual flooding of nearby marshes and tributaries of the Delaware River in Sussex County has severely impacted the sanctuary. The barn and adjoining paddocks were rendered unusable, with much of the fencing washed away. The horses had to be moved through over three feet of water to get to higher ground on the property. Officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency have been onsite and recommended the horses not be moved back until the water fully recedes. The financial assistance from The HSUS and the ASPCA will be used primarily to buy a trailer full of hay to ensure the horses are fed for the next few weeks.

“I would like to thank so many people for their help during this difficult time, especially The HSUS and the ASPCA, for the financial assistance that they have provided for my horses,” said Diane Romano-Potacki, founder of Rivers Edge Horse Rescue and Sanctuary.

Rescue and relief work by the two animal protection organizations continues on the ground as Tropical Storm Irene's damage still afflicts many animals across the East Coast. In North Carolina, The HSUS distributed more than 4,000 pounds of pet food to the animals of struggling families -- either at HSUS’ temporary emergency food and distribution center, or by going door-to-door in devastated neighborhoods. Its emergency shelter in Vermont continues to offer assistance for families stranded by flooding. In upstate New York, the ASPCA Field Investigations and Response Team assisted in the emergency rescue of animals displaced by the severe flooding in Schoharie County. ASPCA responders from across the country deployed to New York City to prepare for animal emergencies in anticipation of the storm and helped hundreds of animals throughout the City’s five boroughs, assessing the needs at evacuation centers where pets were welcomed and delivering rabies vaccines and microchips for cats and dogs at the emergency shelters.

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Follow The HSUS on Twitter. See our work for animals on your iPhone by searching “HumaneTV” in the App Store.

The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the Web at humanesociety.org.

About the ASPCA®  Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first humane organization established in the Americas and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animal welfare. One million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. The ASPCA, which is headquartered in New York City, offers a wide range of programs, including a mobile clinic outreach initiative, its own humane law enforcement team, and a groundbreaking veterinary forensics team and mobile animal CSI unit. For more information, please visit www.aspca.org.

To become a fan of the ASPCA on Facebook, go to http://www.facebook.com/aspca. To follow the ASPCA on Twitter, go to http://www.twitter.com/aspca.

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