Tribal nations suffering under the impact of recent winter storms are getting much-needed aid from the American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF), which has donated $25,000 to help replenish hay supplies for thousands of cattle and horses.
The grant will help struggling livestock in the Fort Belknap, Northern Cheyenne and Blackfeet tribal reservations. These tribes have reported more than 150 livestock deaths due to extreme cold and record amounts of snowfall. This winter’s hay shortages were compounded by Montana’s drought last summer and the wildfires that damaged more than 1 million acres in Montana last autumn.
The AVMF donation will help cover five days of food for the animals in each tribe, after which tribal officials expect they will be able to restore access to their hay supplies or purchase hay from elsewhere in Montana.
“We’re pleased to be able provide this grant to support these tribal nations,” said Dr. Jan K. Strother, chair of the AVMF Board of Directors. “We hope that the contribution from AVMF will save many animal lives during Montana’s state of emergency.”
“The weather events we’ve had over the past several months have really strained feed resources here in Montana,” said Montana Dept. of Agriculture Director Ben Thomas. “We are grateful for the assistance of our national and international partners in helping these communities during their times of need.”
The AVMF has provided more than $200,000 in disaster relief in the last six months to help animal victims of disasters and the veterinarians who provide medical treatment and shelter to affected animals. If you would like to support this work, you can do so by contributing to the AVMF at avmf.org/donate.