Information About Rescue Efforts in Japan & the Pet Bloggers Blog Hop 3/19

I feel like I need to answer some questions and concerns that people are having with the rescue efforts taking place in Japan. I know I have been getting a lot of questions about why we can’t get updates from Japan in a more seamless manner. First there is a 13 or 14 hour time difference which makes communication with anyone on the ground difficult to begin with). When I lived in Asia (in Hong Kong which was a 12 – 13 hour time difference) when I would call the US to speak with my parents on the phone I did so first thing in the morning or in the evening so I knew I would catch them. When I would have email conversations with people in the US I would often receive responses in the middle of the night my time. For those in Japan who are sleep deprived and traumatized and trying to do every last thing possible to help we can’t expect instant responses to our questions even if we are trying to get them help they are so desperate for.

I know a lot of people are asking about the 2 dogs from the video from several days ago and wondering why we can’t see pictures of the dogs if in fact they were rescued like we have been told. Or why I was only receiving information from the US Military family in sporadic bursts and not able to communicate and get all the details at once.

It explains in the video that even on the US Military Base that they were without power for several days after the Earthquake and subsequent Tsunami and I am sure that the base is a priority for power to be restored to as quickly as possible.

In some of the more remote locations in Japan and even in big cities the power has been spotty if available at all and there was a day this week where power was shut down in the big cities to try and restore power to the Nuclear Power Plant. Yes even the Nuclear Power Plant has been without power which is adding to the problem there. There is a fuel shortage, the roads are gone, whole neighborhoods were moved by the force of the Tsunami, and conditions continue to get more dangerous as control is not gotten back over the Nuclear Power Plant. To add to that in the devastated areas there is limited communication for the people in these areas and as far as I know there is no internet except from phones etc which rescuers are trying to limit use for because there is no where in these devastated areas to plug in and recharge.

It is near impossible to just send someone to these remote locations to take pictures of the dogs and cats and have them go back to the city in order to upload the pictures. Please be patient I know you all care and it seems like it is only a few hours drive so its hard to fathom why it is so difficult when looking from the outside into the situation as to why we can’t get the information we crave. Everyone is doing their best to make things happen but the first priority is search and rescue and getting people and animals the medical attention they need.

Those telling the Rescue organizations on the ground that they don’t trust what the organizations are saying is true they are undermining their efforts. The organizations are pleading with you for your patients. The people manning the Facebook pages are volunteers they are doing it because they love and are passionate about animals and feel their time is best spend helping to keep everyone informed and being the coordinators of the efforts. Some are not trained in disaster so feel they would hinder effort and sometimes it is because they have a strong grasp on the English language that they feel the place for them is Social Media. All of these Organizations are privately run small organizations that are joining together to help. They have no government funding or fancy equipment to work with they have relied on donations from animals lovers to operate and never in their worstt nightmares imaged their country in such devastation. They are all made up of individuals taking on the roles they feel most adept at in order to help the organizations do what they are doing. 

“I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” Helen Keller

Update 3/18/11 11:20pm ET: I just found information on Facebook that says the Japanese Government has decided that animals found during a Natural Disaster will not be killed under the 72 hour law. The government will allow more time for people to find their pets and claim them. Thank you all for your concern for the animals and their owners. This information has now been confirmed as accurate and no dog will be killed just because their owner has not claimed them.


 Its another edition of Saturday Pet Bloggers Blog Hop brought to you by Two Little Cavaliers, Life with Dogs, and Confessions of the Plume! Welcome to all of you joining us for the first time we are so excited to have you!
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  1. Thank you for hosting another week of the Pet Blogger Hop and providing information on the Japan Rescue Efforts. The devastation the Japanese people are going through right now is heartbreaking and we were so glad these two dogs will be spared.

  2. Wow. I had no idea that there was so much going on over here!

    It makes complete sense to me that the time difference, the current devastating conditions in Japan, the fact that there are people and pets missing due to the Tsunami, combined with the continuous power outages and nuclear disaster issues, that communication would be an issue. I hope folks lay off the rescue workers so they can do their job. I know we all want to know what is going on and how we can help, but when we demand immediate answers to our questions (when there is so much to be done over there) it takes time and effort away from the real work that needs to be done.

    Thanks for all that you and Neil are doing to update us on everything. I hope people become a little more patient with you and the rescue groups over there. Our needs are NOT the most immediate here. (Sorry. Stepping back off of my soapbox now.)

  3. I don't think people realize all that is done. Thanks!

  4. Great write up Felissa! Also, I'm not sure how it happened but I put the wrong title to my link, (it was last week's title) and can't fix it. Sorry! The post is actually about the Global Pet Expo.

  5. Great post, Felissa.

    People are so quick to armchair quarterback from the comfort of their safe homes. At the end of the day, donate to someone you trust, who you have faith in knowing what they are doing, and let them do their job! It serves no one for these people exhausted on the ground to feel pressured to run back to Facebook with updates!

  6. browndogcbr says

    Hi Y'all,

    Just stopped to say “how y'all doin'?” Thanks for hosting another great blog hop!

    Thanks for updating on Japan.

    Anyone who has ever been in a natural disaster knows that in addition to suddenly being without a means to communicate, there are so many more demanding things on which to focus your attention. Basics such as clean water, protection from the weather, simple survival are foremost.

    Rescuers are too busy trying to save and evacuate the unfortunate victims to worry about other things.

    All our modern communications are useless in a disaster. People trying to get information on loved ones only overburden what communication systems remain, often hindering emergency communication too.

    Y'all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

  7. Wendy @ says

    Awesome post, as usual. I'm staying tuned on the Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support Facebook page, too…

  8. Jan's Funny Farm says

    Thank you for a very good post. It's a terrible situation and everyone is doing the best they can. Most important is helping the people and animals, even though we are all hungry for news.

  9. Good post and video. Seems like a lot of people are helping the best way they can.
    Benny & Lily

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