EOPLE aren't the only ones affected by the recession. Pets, too, are feeling the squeeze, especially shelter animals that depend on the kindness of strangers. Sadly, the recession is forcing New York area shelters to close or downsize.

Oasis Sanctuary in upstate North Branch is closing its doors after a decade of rescuing and finding homes for critters large and small.

"No animal will be left behind," promises Oasis founder Eddie Lama. "We will work to the very end at placing them - but we need help. Please help us keep our promise to the animals." To make a donation, or to foster or adopt one of the shelter's 17 dogs, 21 cats and two goats, e-mail info@oasissanctuary.org.

In Queens, Animal Haven Shelter was a Flushing fixture since 1967; it operated an upstate sanctuary in South Kortright, and opened a Manhattan branch, Animal Haven SoHo, in 2005. Now both locations are permanently closed.

Elsewhere in Queens, Bobbi & the Strays lost the lease on its shelter at JFK Airport and needs a place to house its 26 dogs and 35 cats. To help them out, e-mail

bobbicares1@aol.com.

"It's a scary time," says MaryAnn Chernovsky of Long Island's Little Shelter in Huntington, which currently has 400 cats and kittens, plus 50 dogs and puppies. Chernovsky reports a decrease in adoptions and donations since November.

But shelter-dog advocates have fingers and paws crossed that President Obama will set a trend for all animal-loving Americans by adopting the soon-to-be canine in chief from a shelter.

"For the president to adopt a shelter dog will help our country's homeless-animal problem enormously," Chernovsky says, "because so many people will follow his lead."

js@pet-reporter.com

 

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