In light of the escalation in Gazan rocket fire over the country's South, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Israel is inviting southern residents to bring their pets for free to the organization's shelter in Tel Aviv.

Aiming to prevent pain and suffering to the animals as well as help southern residents cope with what has become a difficult situation, SPCA Israel stressed that residents who cannot properly care for their pets should bring them to the site, located on 159 Herzl Street in Tel Aviv. The organization called upon southern residents to refrain from abandoning their animals in the streets.

"The distress is severe, and it is possible to find assistance in our shelter's services for free," said Hilma Shmoshkowitz, SPCA Israel chairwoman. "It is very important to us to prevent distress both to animals and to residents of the South."

On Monday alone, SPCA Israel received at least 30 calls from southern residents, expressing concern about what to do with their animals in case of further escalation, the organization's spokesman, Gadi Vitner, told The Jerusalem Post. The calls have only increased on Tuesday, and the shelter has therefore sought to organize a safe haven for the pets.

Residents interested in bringing their pets to the SPCA Israel shelter should arrive with their identity cards and valid vaccination documents for the animals, the organization said.

Another organization Let Animals Live, whose shelter is based in Kfar Reut, also reported receiving numerous inquiries from southern residents about boarding policies for their pets. Due to this shelter's overcrowded conditions, however, spokeswoman Eti Altman said that her organization cannot accept additional animals. Instead, she called upon central Israel residents to offer refuge in their homes. 

"We urgently need the help of the public in the Center, to take foster dogs in order to remove them from the line of fire," Altman said. 

The SPCA can be reached in Israel at *4553



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