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Texas wildfires and Northeast floods: You can help pets in danger


Wildfires are ravaging central Texas and flooding is still affecting the Northeast.


Kinky Dink is an adoptable torbie at
Austin Pets Alive, which has been affected by the Texas wildfires.

Shelters and rescue groups across both areas are working to get local families’ pets and the homeless pets in their care to safety, and we’ve been reaching out to adoption groups in the affected regions to find out what they need and offer help.

(If you are a Petfinder member and need disaster-related assistance, please email your Petfinder outreach team or learn more about the Foundation Disaster Fund.)

If you just want to help, we’ve got some simple things you can do to make a difference (after the jump).

How you can help pets impacted by disaster

Donate money: Find a shelter or rescue group in an affected area and give what you can. You can search for adoption groups by city and state or by zip code on Petfinder.

Organize a pet supply drive: Many adoption groups are in dire need of crates, metal bowls and dishes, clean old towels and blankets, newspaper, pet food and cat litter. If you live close to an affected shelter, call and ask what the group needs, then ask your neighbors or coworkers to donate. (If you take a picture of your donation, post it to our Facebook wall!)

Foster a pet: Notify your local adoption group that you can foster a pet — either one waiting for a home or one whose family has had to temporarily relocate.

Volunteer: Find out if your local shelter needs volunteers to help evacuate, transport or care for pets. You can also offer to be put on a will-call list of people who will help in the case of a shelter evacuation. You may help unload food and supplies, set up temporary shelters, do laundry, walk dogs, feed cats, or just spend some de-stressing playtime with the pets. (If your area hasn’t been affected, you can still prepare for the worst by training as a Disaster Animal Response Team volunteer.)

Spread the word: Write a blog post, share this post on Facebook or tweet about the needs of shelters and rescue groups in the danger zones. Include a shelter’s donation wish list, a link to a place where people can make donations or an adoptable pet who needs a permanent or temporary home.

And remember that, even after the fires or heavy rains end, recovery may take much longer. So consider making whatever way you choose to help a long-term project and continue helping pets in need.

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Previous entries:

A lesson from Irene: What if you’re not home when disaster strikes?

Hurricane Irene: Are your pets prepared?

A Guide to Disaster Preparedness for Families with Pets

1. Disaster Preparedness and Pets

2. Disaster Preparedness Tips

3. Disaster Preparedness Tips – Spanish Version

4. How to Create A Disaster Preparedness Plan

5. Keeping Pets Safe During Disasters

6. Disaster Preparedness Kit Checklist

7. Evacuating Your Home In Disasters

8. Riding Out Disasters At Home

9. Dogs: Disaster Preparedness Shopping List

10. Cats: Disaster Preparedness Shopping List

11. Horses: Disaster Preparedness Shopping List

12. Birds: Disaster Preparedness Shopping List

13. Annual Health Checklist

14. Dog Vaccination Schedule

15. Cat Vaccination Schedule

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