Members of the National Animal Rescue and Sheltering Coalition (NARSC) including the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) were recently on hand assisting Georgetown County Emergency Management with emergency sheltering as well as conducting water rescues for animals affected by severe flooding in Georgetown County, S.C. Additionally, the organization has established a distribution center where pet supplies are being provided to residents throughout the community.

The Georgetown County Emergency Management called in NARSC to provide relief to local agencies including Saint Frances Animal Center and All 4 Paws who have been working at capacity due to a large number of displaced animals following the storm.

“The ASPCA is pleased to be able to offer support through the coalition as this community recovers from the devastating floods,” said Dr. Dick Green, senior director of Disaster Response for the ASPCA Field Investigations and Response team and former NARSC chair. “For many people, pets are part of the family. Our goal is to provide critical resources to rescue and care for animals displaced by the disaster, so that pet owners are able to focus on rebuilding their lives until they can be reunited with their animals.”

The ASPCA Field Investigations and Response team frequently responds to natural disasters, including recent wildfires in Lake County, Calif., Hurricanes Sandy and Irene in 2012, the Joplin, Mo. tornado in 2011, and Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, in addition to being called upon by state and municipal governments and other animal welfare partners to lend expertise during large-scale animal rescue operations.

“The American Humane Association Red Star Rescue team is there for the families, pets, and shelter animals who have suffered in the wake of this devastating flooding,” said Randal Collins, national director for Red Star Rescue for Animals. “Our hearts break for these two- and four-legged flood victims, but we will do everything in our power to help restore normalcy to this tragic situation.”

“IFAW brings more than 13 years of disaster response experience both internationally and in the U.S.,” said Shannon Walajtys, IFAW Disaster Response Manager, NARSC Chair and Liaison to the State of South Carolina. “Much like what we saw 10 years ago after Hurricane Katrina, we are still seeing flood victims refusing to leave their homes because they don’t have a place to keep their animals. Together with our NARSC members, we are giving families in South Carolina a chance to stay together by caring and sheltering their small and large animals.”

FHS helps SC animals as well

Flagler Humane Society also took in six dogs and six cats this week from a North Carolina rescue group that was helping to make room for animals left homeless because of the flooding. All the animals are available for adoption right now at FHS.

“These animals are in tremendous and urgent need and we are fortunate enough to be able to help,” said Amy Carotenuto, Flagler Humane Society Executive Director. “We have been consistently saving 88 percent of the animals entering our shelter this year and we are so grateful to be able to help these animals left homeless because of a disaster.”