Imagine a catastrophic
storm requires residents to evacuate their homes immediately, but the beloved family
pet or service animal can’t be found. Or the residents want to leave ahead of the
storm with a pet, but are not sure what shelters accept animals. What would you
do? Leave and protect your personal safety, and leave your pet behind or put
yourself in harm’s way to find your animals?
To help solve this
problem, AKC Reunite donated a pet disaster relief trailer with supplies to the
Sacramento County Department of Animal Care and Regulation. AKC Pet Disaster
Relief provides trailers to tax-exempt organizations who provide animal care
services during the first 72 hours following a disaster, before FEMA support
and services are deployed. The AKC trailers
help to create a safe, temporary home-base for at least 65 pets immediately
after a disaster is declared.
“When disaster strikes,
many animals that are wandering and lost are not necessarily strays but family
pets,” said Dave Dickinson, Director of Sacramento County’s Animal Care and
Regulation. “This trailer and its supplies will prepare us for a better
disaster response and give us the tools to reunite people and their pets during
stressful times, when lives are turned upside down.”
The purchase of the
trailer was made possible by $22,000 in donations and grants from the AKC
Humane Fund, Inc., a not-for-profit that promotes responsible pet ownership, and
AKC Reunite, the nation’s largest non-profit pet identification and recovery
“The AKC Humane Fund
works to assist pet owners when their lives have been temporally disrupted,”
said Doug Ljungren, President and CEO of the AKC Humane Fund, Inc. “A pet
disaster relief trailer will help citizens in Sacramento County find safety for
their pets at times when it matters the most.”
The trailers house and
deliver essential supplies such as fans, lighting and generators; cleaning
supplies; maintenance items; and animal care items including crates and
carriers, AKC Reunite microchips and an AKC Reunite universal microchip
scanner, as well as bowls, collars and leashes.
The trailer can provide
temporary re-location for pets and service animals for people who evacuate
their homes during disasters such as floods, hazmat emergencies, or
earthquakes. It can be used to create one of two types of animal shelters:
Co-location shelter, which houses both humans and their animal companions. The people housed at the shelter are responsible for their animal’s general care.
Lost and found pet shelters, in which displaced animals are housed in what becomes a reunion center for people and their animals.
For more information
about AKC Pet Disaster Relief, visit www.akcreunite.org/relief. For more information about Sacramento County’s
Department of Animal Care and Regulation, also known as the Bradshaw Animal
Shelter, visit www.acr.saccounty.net.