GAINESVILLE, Fla. The Alachua County Humane Society and Gainesville Pet Rescue are closely monitoring Hurricane Michael's track and its potential effects on North Central Florida.
Residents and University of Florida students Sophia DiMartino and Anna Bartolini decided to do their part to help others and animals during Hurricane Michael.
DiMartino and Bartolini saw Alachua County Humane Society's Facebook post about needing fosters for animals who need temporary homes after evacuating from the hurricane.
“We got super excited and we said ‘Let's go right now’,” DiMartino said.
“It was about an hour ago that we made the decision and we just jumped on it,” Bartolini said.
Alachua County Humane Society’s Director of Development Margot DeConna says the Humane Society accepted 92 animals from Suwannee and Taylor county on Tuesday and on Wednesday took in another 65 cats from the Panhandle Animal Welfare Society.
“For the last several days we have been preparing to respond to Hurricane Michael's impact on Northwest Florida,” DeConna said. “We actually have been able to completely empty Gainesville Pet Rescue so that we can be staged and ready for the influx of animals that we're expecting after the storm."
DiMartino and Bartolini are the temporary foster parents for their dog named “Bones" and they couldn't be happier.
“We're college students so having a pet is something we miss having around,” Bartolini said. “It's really exciting to have a pet for two weeks and not too much responsibility after that."
DiMartino says it is worth it to help out anyway she could during an animal's time of need.
“Alachua County Humane Society does so many things for the community,” DiMartino said. “So the fact that we can help them in any way and help some dogs stay out of the hurricane—it's awesome.”
To become a temporary foster, visit alachuahumane.org or gainesvillepetrescue.org to fill out the foster applications online.