LaSPCA begins major search for lost pets

By CityBusiness staff report

NEW ORLEANS — The Louisiana SPCA will begin a major trapping campaign today to sweep the unpopulated areas of lost pets and strays. The campaign, a collaboration of the LA/SPCA and the Humane Society of the United States, will take place through Jan. 20.

The campaign will focus on portions of Gentilly, eastern New Orleans and the Ninth Ward. Trappers will also target areas where the LA/SPCA has received numerous reports of stray dogs.

"This is a concentrated effort to attempt to find and assist animals that have become strays in this post-Katrina time," said LA/SPCA Executive Director Laura Maloney.

The trapping effort will focus primarily on dogs. Cats will only be trapped if they are sick or injured, or obviously friendly. The trappers do not plan to target healthy feral cats, as managed feral cat colonies are jointly being established and identified.

The LA/SPCA will hold stray animals for five days. After that, the animals will be evaluated and transferred to a shelter for adoption.

The LA/SPCA recommends that pet owners in these areas keep their animals properly confined during the sweep. Pet owners should also make sure their pets are wearing traceable identification and tags.

The Humane Society is bringing its special operations training team, as well as humane trapping equipment. The LA/SPCA will also work with Best Friends Animal Society to place the animals in new homes.

The private nonprofit LA/SPCA worked with several other agencies to rescue more than 8,500 animals after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans.•