PETA Warns Against Leaving Animals Behind to Fend for Themselves
For Immediate Release:
June 5, 2020
Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382
Norfolk, Va. – As Tropical Storm Cristobal approaches the Gulf Coast and a mandatory evacuation has been ordered for all residents of Grand Isle, Louisiana, PETA is offering vital advice to help ensure the safety of animals now and for the rest of the hurricane season. PETA has provided the following information, which could save the lives of cats, dogs, rabbits, hamsters, and other animals who need to be included in disaster-preparedness plans:
- Keep animals indoors with you if you choose not to evacuate. Never leave them tethered, penned, or crated. This includes rabbits, birds, lizards, dogs, cats, or any other animals who can be taken
- If you evacuate, do not leave animals behind, where they could drown or be killed by falling debris, collapsing roofs, etc. Plan your destination. Do not leave animals unsupervised in a car—they could suffer from heatstroke once the ambient temperature rises above 70 degrees, and the car could even be overturned or crushed during a significant storm.
- Although emergency shelters sometimes turn animals away, some hotels and many motels may be willing to accept small animals in an emergency. Transport them in secure carriers and keep larger dogs leashed or harnessed, as frightening sounds and unfamiliar surroundings can cause them to bolt. Take along water and food bowls, a favorite toy, a blanket, a towel, and enough food for a week.
- Be prepared by having your animals microchipped and putting secure, legible ID tags on them.
- Watch for other animals in trouble, including absent neighbors’ animals and others who may have gotten loose or been left behind. If you see any animals in distress and cannot help, note their location and call authorities for help immediately.
PETA’s Animal Rescue Team has witnessed firsthand the trauma that animals endure when left behind to face floodwaters and flying debris. During previous storms, we have found dogs dead. We have also found them up to their necks in water, unable to sit or lie down, in almost-submerged crates inside houses and seen animals who have been flung around in high winds.
PETA has released a natural disaster-preparedness PSA featuring Dean Winters, to remind families to make plans to ensure the safety of their animal companions long before evacuating. For more information, please visit PETA.org.