August 29, 2005
Dear CHAI and Hakol Chai Supporters,

CHAI and Hakol Chai have been rescuing animals in Gaza and the West Bank who were abandoned by evacuating settlers.

Settlers evacuated from Gaza and the West Bank left their farm and companion animals behind to die of thirst and hunger. Also affected were the strays who were fed by them or had lived for so long from their garbage. The problem proved to be larger than anyone had anticipated, and Israelís Veterinary Services lacked sufficient personnel to deal with it.

CHAI's Israeli-based sister charity, Hakol Chai, responded to the challenge, entering Gaza with its 23-foot mobile spay/neuter clinic, equipped with 30 cages, 20 humane traps, an experienced veterinarian and two veterinary assistants, plus dedicated volunteers, to assist in a special mission ó rescuing animals left behind.

With permission from the Army, Hakol Chaiís clinic entered Gaza and traveled from settlement to settlement, escorted by soldiers, to everywhere within the Gush Katif region in southern Gaza, including Morag, Neve Dekalim, Shalev, Atzmona, Netzer Hazani, Gan Or, and Rafiah Yam, and also to Kfar Darom and Netzarim in the center of Gaza.

Hakol Chaiís clinic is the only mobile clinic, with veterinarian and trained staff, working in the territories. We were asked to go first to Gaza, as more and larger settlements there were being evacuated. Our work there was filmed by the Army, the footage featured on the main TV station in Israel. Radio channels and newspapers in Israel and abroad also carried the story (including the BBC).

So far, we have picked up cats, dogs, chickens, parakeets, at least one turkey, and a baby iguana. Seventeen thirsty goats found without water were given water, and their location was reported to the Veterinary Services, in the hope that they will arrange rescue for these larger farm animals. A dog was found who had been stolen five years before, resulting in a dispute between his original guardians, identified by a microchip, and his current ones. A tiny kitten hanging on the edge of survival was saved by Hakol Chaiís veterinarian. Forty parakeets in a cage were removed from one home. Unfortunately, several abandoned birds had already died in their cages. Rescued animals were transferred to a shelter, and Hakol Chai/CHAI will help with efforts to find homes for them.

To help reunite microchipped dogs with their guardians, Hakol Chai appealed to the Prime Ministerís Office for help. Microchips contain the name of the guardian, but not their current address, but the Prime Ministerís Office does have that information and finally agreed to help. Once again, Hakol Chaiís efforts received media attention. You can read more about the rescue operation on our website.

The border with Gaza has now been sealed and we have been asked to bring the clinic to the West Bank, to help there.

Hakol Chai staff members and volunteers have been recording their experiences in Gaza. You can read their stories on our website. Here is just one of many:

Our clinic got a report from a soldier about a female dog in Rafiah Yam. On the way there, our clinic accidentally encountered a group of Palestinians from the area who shouted at the clinic staff to go away. The clinic continued to look for the dog. Soldiers said they had seen her during the past hour, but they didn't know exactly where she was now. When we were at the point of desperation, a soldier who followed the clinic called Yafit and told her he found the dog, had closed her in a room, and was waiting next to her. The clinic hurried there and found a very big dog (Great Dane mix), exhausted, full of ticks. She was very friendly but scared. They picked her up.

Please help with the costs of holding adoption events to find homes for the rescued animals and to support the crucial, ongoing work ó which now includes rescue ó of our mobile spay/neuter clinic.

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Yours for a more compassionate world,

Nina Natelson
CHAI - Concern for Helping Animals in Israel   POB 3341  Alexandria  VA  22302

Phone: 703-370-0333

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CHAI - Concern for Helping Animals in Israel | POB 3341 | Alexandria | VA | 22302