Helping Hounds Dog Rescue Responds to Post-Hurricane Needs


Hurricane Ida caused damage on the Gulf Coast and in the northeast. The impacts are being felt here in downtown New York. Shelters accept dogs displaced from Mississippi.

Helping Hounds Dog Rescue in North Syracuse has hosted dozens of dogs for Mississippi, Texas, and other southern states. Some of them are routine, but Hurricane Ida exaggerated the problem. At the end of August, Helping Hounds welcomed 60 dogs in one afternoon.

The shelter was overwhelmed and the volunteers and staff were overwhelmed. Welcoming so many dogs made it possible to open kennels in Mississippi and prevent the dogs from being euthanized. After so many trips the puppies are often scared and nervous, but the staff are very welcoming.

“It doesn’t take more than half an hour for them to get used to us,” said Sara Dampf, animal care staff member at Helping Hounds. “We give them breakfast. We hug them and within hours they look like brand new dogs. They are happy to be here. We put them in play groups, their tails waggle. So it seems overwhelming at first, but very quickly we settle into a rhythm. “

The most useful thing to do is adopt a dog. The shelter also accepts donations of cash, dog food, toys, leashes and collars. This Saturday is Pumpkins & Pooches, the biggest rescue event of the year. Stop 11am to 3pm for food trucks, raffles, vendors and dogs.

“This is my favorite fundraiser that we do because a lot of our adopted dogs come back to visit us dressed in their costumes,” Dampf said. “We have a costume contest. We love catching up with them and hearing their new stories and I hope some of the dogs that have been here for a little while can have showcase opportunities and I hope they can return home as well.

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