U of I Vet Med Helping Animals Impacted by OK Tornado


While many groups are collecting donations for Oklahoma residents impacted by last week’s tornado, there is a local effort underway to help their displaced pets

Karie Vander Werf is a veterinarian studying large animal care at the University of Illinois.

When the massive tornado struck Moore, Okla. on May 20, Vander Werf said she was moved by the plight of the animals that were impacted. More than 150 horses alone died.

Vander Werf is partnering up with Danville’s Whitestar Home Health Agency to help both humans and animals hurt by storm. 

She made a few calls, and eventually reached the Oklahoma City Animal Welfare Agency.

“It took about a day to figure out who to donate to, but there’s lots and lots of organizations out there that are collecting money and supplies, but basically we just had to pick one," she said. "At least we have at least some backing through the Department of Agriculture, saying they’re a good organization to work with."

Items sought include food dishes, cat litter, leashes, collars, leg wraps for horses, and pet shampoo. Vander Werf is also looking for unopened food packages for dogs, cats, horses, and small exotic pets.

Donations can be made at the U of I's Large Animal Clinic at 1102 West Hazelwood Drive, and the Small Animal Clinic at 1008 West Hazelwood Drive in Urbana. People can also drop off supplies at Pet Supplies Plus in Champaign at 2821 W Kirby Avenue, and the Champaign County Humane Society in Urbana. at 1911 East Main Street.

A truck will leave for Oklahoma with the supplies on Friday, May 31.

Story source: WILL