Category 4 Hurricane Florence is heading towards the East Coast as early as Thursday evening. The wind ease slightly in the morning on Tuesday but it quickly speed up to 140 miles per hour shortly afterward. The storm is likely to remain dangerous during landfall.
Hurricane Florence has prompted more than 1 million people to flee Carolina and Virginia. However, they are not the only ones that are evacuating. The staff in the animal shelter are also getting ready to relocate the animals to a safe place.
Many animal shelters are looking for volunteers to an animal with them when they leave. They are also asking people to donate newspapers, and food. A Norfolk shelter, has managed to evacuate 8 dogs and 18 cats to another animal shelter in Washington D.C. The animals will stay for a temporary period in the animal shelter in Washington D.C. until they are claimed by the owners.
Pet owners should take into consideration the needs of their pets in their disaster plans even though there are animal organizations that are ready to provide assistance. Pets with no one to take them may become missing and end up as strays by the time the owner comes back. If you are a pet owner, make sure your pet wear ID tag. You should also prepare an emergency kit for your pet that contains essentials such as food, water, and first aids.
There are also animals shelters that have taken up animals from shelters located in places that receive evacuation orders. Greenville Humane Society is full house with more than 200 animals onboard as it has taken in more than 60 animals from animals shelters situated in low areas. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) has helped to rescue 37,000 animals in 2017.
Joe Elmore, CEO of the Charleston Animal Society revealed that they spent roughly $120k last year for preparation against Hurricane Harvey, Irma and Maria. There are lots of expenses to prepare the animals for the hurricane, for example, the cost of transporting the animal out of Florida.
Last year, they had to use a 12 year old trailer to transport hundreds of animals to safety. Fortunately, this spring, they had acquired a new trailer to transport the animals. The new trailer costs about $650K and is equipped with generators to maintain a cool temperature. Charleston has around 100 staff and 700 volunteers.
Hurricane Florence is giving HSUS Animal Rescue team a busy team in helping animal shelters to relocate. They have helped 25 animal shelters to get the animals mobilized within a few hours of requesting for help.