Island County, WA — Washington State is now equipped with its third state-of-the-art AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer that will be available to dispatch to any disaster scenes that need assistance sheltering pets.
AKC Pet Disaster Relief, a national program that is dedicated to keeping pets and their owners safe in the aftermath of natural or civil disasters, joined forces with local American Kennel Club dog clubs and dog lovers to present an emergency trailer to officials from the Washington State Animal Response Team in a ceremony held yesterday.
AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailers help to create a safe, temporary home-base for at least 65 pets during the first 72 hours after a disaster is declared. The trailers house and deliver essential animal care items including crates and carriers, AKC Reunite microchips and an AKC Reunite universal microchip scanner, bowls, collars and leashes as well as fans, lighting and generators; cleaning supplies and maintenance items. These supplies can be used as co-location shelters, where people can evacuate with their pets, as well as emergency animal shelters for displaced animals.
“The first hours following a disaster are critical, and this trailer will provide the shelter and supplies needed to care for animals and keep them safe,” said Tom Sharp, AKC Reunite CEO. “AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailers provide impacted areas safe and effective pet sheltering solutions, and AKC Reunite is pleased to provide communities across the nation a valuable tool during such disasters.”
The purchase of the trailer was made possible by more than $22,000 in donations and grants from Invisible Fence® Brand, the Washington Brittany Club, Cascade Havanese Club, Sammamish Kennel Club, Mount Rainier Working Dog Club, Washington State Obedience Training Club, Puget Sound Doberman Pinscher Club, Adele Keyfel, Evergreen Basenji Club, Whidbey Island Kennel Club, Pacific Crest Keeshond Club, Dog Judges Association of America, Basenji Club of America, and AKC Reunite, the nation’s largest non-profit pet identification and recovery service.
“We are incredibly grateful to these AKC dog clubs and AKC Reunite for giving us such an important tool. With the addition of a second AKC Pet Disaster Relief Trailer to WASART it allows us to extend the reach of our care needed for pets in times of disaster, giving Washington State pet owners a sense of calm,” said Gretchen McCallum, Co-Founder and Treasurer of the Washington State Animal Response Team.
“Our club is proud to be part of providing a safe haven for pets affected by disasters in Washington State,” said Sheri-Berndt Smith, President of the Whidbey Island Kennel Club. “We’re dedicated to the safety of all animals, and we’re very pleased to help bring another AKC Pet Disaster Relief Trailer to the State. It is hoped this trailer, and others, will provide much needed support to pets and pet owners both before and after a disaster.”
“Pet safety and well-being is of the utmost importance to us, and our company,” said Georgia Welch of Invisible Fence Brand. “We’re glad to help provide communities invaluable tools like the AKC Pet Disaster Relief Trailer.”
Learn more about how to get involved in AKC Pet Disaster Relief at www.akcreunite.org/relief.
The way home for lost pets.
AKC Reunite, an affiliate of the American Kennel Club®, is the largest non-profit pet identification and recovery service provider in the United States. Since 1995 AKC Reunite has helped pet owners reunite with their lost animals via identification and 24/7 pet recovery specialists, enrolling over 6 million companion animals and recovering more than 475,000 lost pets. AKC Reunite microchips are a popular choice of pet professionals throughout the country for permanent pet identification.
The AKC Reunite Canine Support and Relief Fund has donated more than $6 million since 2001 for disaster preparedness and relief causes that impact our nation's pets. AKC Reunite also provides free recovery service enrollment for all active service, military, and law enforcement K-9 dogs. For more information visit www.akcreunite.org or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/akcreunite).
Washington State Animal Response Team
Washington State Animal Response Team is an all-volunteer, all-donation supported 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization facilitating the rescue of animals in emergency situations such as floods, fires, and earthquakes as well as one-off rescues such as a horse trapped in a well, or a dog stranded halfway down a cliff.
Members train year-round in some of the more difficult rescue areas. Skills honed by many of the members include rope work and the use of pulleys and rappelling, animal assessment and handling, and emergency animal sheltering. Deploying members are also required to take FEMA training and response-ready members are certified State Emergency Workers.