Rescuing animals during disasters - United StatesIn a disaster, animals can’t ask for help
Hurricanes and wildfires continue to ravage the country, displacing thousands of humans and animals alike. Many of these disasters can occur in a very short period of time, giving those affected much less time to prepare and evacuate. The number of 'billion dollar' natural disasters has nearly doubled over the past quarter century, with climate change exacerbating the rate and magnitude of such catastrophes.
Animals are critical to human society culturally, economically, and psychologically—their safety and wellbeing must be a key consideration in disaster response planning at all levels of community and government in the United States. According to Shannon Walatjys, IFAW Program Director for Disaster Response and Risk Reduction, “Whether through rehabilitating injured animals, reintroducing wildlife back into its natural environment, or reuniting families with their companion animals, IFAW works to return a sense of normalcy and hope to both human and animal communities that suddenly find themselves in upheaval as a result of a natural disaster.”
National Preparedness Month is recognized each September and aims to raise awareness about the importance of preparing for disasters and emergencies that could strike at any time. In light of the 2021 theme, “Prepare to Protect: preparing for disasters is protecting everyone you love,” IFAW has created a checklist for preparedness for everyone’s favorite furry loved ones: pets.
Preparing ahead of time ensures a swifter transition to safe environments during a crisis. You will be grateful you did it and so will your beloved pet.
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