We’ve been hearing it for days, how the remnants of Hurricane Michael, and Florence before him, were causing flooding and even tornadoes inland, away from the coast.
As I watched coverage of the most recent storm I was drawn to a story about pets, and a shelter that was taking them in prior to the hurricane making landfall. The short video piece featured shots of kennels all in a row. Peeking out were all manner of dogs … the itty bitties to the bigs. The hairless to the hairy … the young and the elderly. Many of these pets were sheltering like their owners, safe from the ravage of the storm. Most would be claimed afterward, some would not; they would become remnants of the hurricane, much like the random storms which moved across country when Flo or Michael had passed.
York Adopt-a-Pet (YAAP) Kennel Manager Kim Hart received a call following Hurricane Florence which hit North Carolina in September. The local agency had helped out last year during hurricane season. At that time YAAP was able to take in six dogs; mostly smaller breeds.
“We do what we can,” Hart explains. “Last year we had three Chihuahuas and other small dogs. We have been busy this year and with not a lot of room we were able to take in two larger dogs.”
Making the 2 1/2 day trip to Iowa and Nebraska from North Carolina via straight truck were 28 dogs, two of which were bound for York.
“You wonder how they do it (transport that many dogs),” Hart says. “I asked them, and they said whenever they stop, they have to let every dog out.” So with 28 dogs and two people that made a total of 30 pottie calls each time.
These pet caravans are amazing things. For this particular one, dedicated volunteers raised $10,000 on a Go-fund Me page to pay for the trip. Costs to transport included truck rental, and all of the necessary vet care in order the pets be driven from state to state.
“They have to have current Rabies, Parvo, Distemper and Bordetella shots and be heartworm checks to be health certificated to be transported across state lines,” Hart tells.
Arriving in Nebraska City via transport were Rebel and Hunter. The pair were shuttled to YAAP from the Eastern Nebraska town by two more intrepid volunteers who made sure the pair made it to their destination.
Hunter was found as a stray dog in North Carolina. He is a 60 pound, 2 year-old Yellow Labrador Retriever mix who was in the shelter at the time of Hurricane Florence. He had to be rescued to make room for all the new dogs coming in after the storm. Volunteers at YAAP are always laughing at him because he gets excited and dances around. He has a sweet and funny personality but will require a tall fence and someone with plenty of time for walks and play. He will also need to be an indoor dog because he loves to be around people. He is completely kennel trained at the shelter, and has moved over to the adoption room. Sometime in his life Hunter’s tail was docked, but it doesn’t keep him from wagging it … a lot!
Rebel is a hurricane survivor. His owner made it through the storm but lost his home and made the decision to relinquish his pet. Rebel is a black and white Labrador Retriever/American Bull Dog mix. His is 7-8 months of age and weighs in at 60 pounds already! Hart says Rebel is puppy personified, full of energy. He is a sturdy looking fellow who loves people. He will be moving to the adoption area soon.
Once again York Adopt-a-Pet has answered the call; doing what they can to assist other rescue agencies because as Hart says, they would do the same thing for us. These survivors of Hurricane Florence have made their way from North Carolina to York and are awaiting forever homes, remnants no more.