Speaking On Behalf Of China's Animals

China_dogMy heart almost jumped out when I opened the picture. Kati was holding a small dog amid mountains of rubble. Everything behind her as far as one can see is flattened. - Grace Gabriel, IFAW

IFAW's Asia Regional Director Grace Gabriel continues to share with us her perspective of the situation in China:

“I have been frantically trying to figure out how to get toward the epicenter of the earthquake to assess the situation with animals….A Red Cross team has promised to take me with them today (Wednesday).” - Kati, the vet that works at the Panda Breeding Center text messaged me these words, knowing that I want to get first hand information to prepare IFAW for responding to this disaster.

The extent of the devastation exceeded anybody’s wildest imaginations. On the front page of China’s English newspaper, a full page picture showed the miraculous rescue of a baby girl from the rubbles. Behind her rescuer are dead bodies, paper white faces with life drained out of them in that fateful moment.

By now, there have been more than 300 smaller aftershocks in the region. The torrential rain has been unrelenting, causing mud slides. Huge boulders are coming down the mountains, blocking the already treacherous roads and making any rescue attempt difficult. Wolong Nature Reserve, the synonym for China’s Giant Panda is at the epicenter and is still not accessible.

I am not so concerned about wild animals. They often have the ability to sense the abnormalities in nature and thus get away, like those elephants and monkeys that sensed the Indian Ocean Tsunami and scurried away from the beach to higher ground. It is the animals that are in confined environments that will likely become victims, millions of livestock on farms, companion animals in people’s homes and even pandas that are kept in captivity.

There are warnings from animals before this earthquake as well. Thousands of toads came out of the sewer systems to get on the road in several Chinese cities—an extremely abnormal occurrence, yet people bushed it off as “animals are animals”. If only…if only we were able to interpret and heed the advise of animals.

Comments: 5

 
Anonymous
5 years ago

I also search for such rescue after earthquake,only result is this page.
Well done!

 
Anonymous
6 years ago

Did you know that the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuary, a cherished World Heritage site and home to 30% of the world’s remaining pandas, suffered major damage? Or that the Sanctuaries include breeding centers that support zoos all over the world, and in the United States? Without these centers, the future of the remaining endangered pandas is uncertain. Check out www.FriendsofWorldHeritage.org (a grassroots initiative created by the United Nations Foundation with Expedia, Inc. and UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre) to see how you can help save the pandas.

 
Anonymous
6 years ago

Like the previous poster, I also am so worried about the animals following China's earthquake. Everyday I look on the internet hoping to find more news about how the rescue and relief efforts are going, and if more animals are being helped. Animals deserve just as much help and attention as humans.

 
Anonymous
6 years ago

I AM SO WORRIED ABOUT THE ANIMALS IN CHINA ! EVERYDAY I SEARCH FOR INFORMATION AND RESCUE ! I CAN SEE IN THE NEWS ABOUT PEOPLE ALL THE TIME, BUT I WAS LOOKING ALL OVER THE INTERNET ABOUT THE RESCUE OF ANIMALS AND TODAY I FINALY FOUND PEOPLE THERE HELPING AND NEWS. I WISH I WAS THERE TO HELP. I LOVE ANIMALS AND THEY DESERVE HELP MUCH AS THE HUMANS DO ! I KNOW CHINESE PEOPLE DONT LIKE ANIMALS AND ALL THE CRUELTY THEY DO WITH ANIMALS THERE. BUT I HOPE LOTS OF ANIMALS WILL BE RESCUED AND HAVE A BETTER TREATMENT FROM THE CHINESE PEOPLE !

 
Anonymous
6 years ago

For those of us reading and watching the coverage and,the situation in China is devastating and unimaginable... My heart goes out to all those impacted by the quake. I have also been waiting to hear some news of animal rescue efforts and am so happy to hear that IFAW is engaged. My thoughts are with Kati and the team as you continue with your efforts. I'll be watching for further updates and hopefully many more positive outcomes.

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