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Best Friends Animal Society Collects, Distributes Pet Supplies to Sandy-impacted New York animal shelters

NEW YORK - Best Friends Animal Society staff, volunteers and network partner-affiliated organizations collected and distributed more than two truckloads of pet food and supplies Saturday to help half a dozen New York/New Jersey animal shelters and rescue groups struggling after Hurricane Sandy.

The food drive, organized by Best Friends Animal Society, which is headquartered in Kanab, Utah, was so successful the items quickly filled and overflowed from the Manhattan office space donated by a Best Friends volunteer. Photos are available here: //

"Today's donation drive was very humbling," said Tammy Heeber, Best Friends' volunteer coordinator based in New York said. "We are beyond grateful for the outpouring of support. Many animals will benefit from the generosity of people who gave from their hearts. We are also so thankful to Best Friends' regular Tri-State volunteers-who are there no matter what-when you need them most."

Approximately 30 volunteers, 25 from Manhattan and five from New Jersey accepted and sorted the donations of pet food, sweaters, blankets, toys, treats, leashes, collars, cat litter, pet beds, crates and carriers. Another local group, Adopt-A-Dog, contributed numerous crates, bowls, beds and food.

Generous pet lovers donated more than 200 bags of dry dog food and 100 bags of cat food. People also brought more than $500 worth of gift cards and cash donations, which will be distributed to shelters.

The items were sorted and transported within hours to six animal organizations hit hard by the storm: Staten Island Feral Cat Rescue, Staten Island; Animal Anarchy, Staten Island; Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter, Long Island; Little Shelter, Long Island; Animal Protection League, N.J. and Husky House, N.J.

Diane Mancher, a book publicist and Best Friends volunteer, donated her office space for the donation drive.

"I'm so blown away by how many donations have come in to help the animals," she said. "We've been getting shipments from all over the country. One package in particular was so touching - a box of hand-knitted cat blankets donated anonymously. To think of someone sewing these precious blankets and not even wanting a 'thank you.' It's just so amazing, I broke down in tears."

Best Friends already is planning another donation drive next Saturday in Totowa, Patsy's Pet Stop, a shop that promotes the adoption of rescued animals in their store and on their website.

Thanks to member support, Best Friends already has distributed more than $50,000 in grants to shelters and rescue groups to help defray the extraordinary costs incurred by animal rescue groups and other organizations caring for animals impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

Best Friends staff also have transported more than 80 dogs and cats out of storm-affected shelters to Network Partner groups in New England and upstate New York.

Those who wish to contribute to this emergency relief fund for the animals of Hurricane Sandy can visit : Donated funds will be used exclusively for Best Friends' relief work to help animals during this and other disasters.

About Best Friends Animal Society®

Best Friends Animal Society®, named Animal Welfare Non-Profit National Brand of the Year based on the 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend® study, is a national animal welfare organization building no-kill programs and partnerships that will bring about a day when there are No More Homeless Pets®. The society's leading initiatives in animal care and community programs are coordinated from its Kanab, Utah headquarters, the country's largest no-kill sanctuary. This work is made possible by the personal and financial support of a grassroots network of supporters and community partners across the nation.

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