As evacuations are issued along the East Coast because of Hurricane Dorian, animal shelters are trying to make room for four-legged hurricane evacuees, including an Arlington, Virginia, rescue organization.
Lucky Dog Animal Rescue answered an urgent call to clear 19 kennels at a South Carolina animal shelter to make room for pets displaced by the hurricane.
“It took a lot of people to pull this off,” said Mirah Horowitz, executive director and founder of Lucky Dog Animal Rescue.
Horowitz said the group got a call on Sunday from a shelter in Florence County, South Carolina, which needed to make room for the pets of people ordered to evacuate the state’s coastal areas.
“They can’t do that if the shelter dogs are still in the kennels,” Horowitz said.
Lucky Dog Animal Rescue accepted the challenge to bring a van-load of dogs to the D.C. area; but since it does not operate a shelter, that meant they had less than 12 hours to find foster parents for 19 dogs, including 9 puppies.
Horowitz got the word out for foster parents or families, and the response was amazing.
“There are many people here in the D.C. area who just opened up their homes, and said ‘I can take a dog; I can take a litter of puppies,'” Horowitz said.
The dogs were all a part of a group of animals that were set to be brought to Arlington later this month. With the threat of the hurricane, the time table was fast-forwarded from weeks to only a couple of hours.
The animals are available for adoption. Horowitz said for those who can’t adopt, they can also help the organization with donations, or as a foster willing to take in dogs. That is something the organization will need, as they are already planning a trip to pick up more animals from South Carolina this weekend.
Horowitz said that helping to move animals out of the South Carolina shelter is a way for the group to help people forced to make the difficult decision to leave their homes behind.
“At least they don’t have to leave their pets, and they can bring those very important family members with them, and they have a place to put them because we’ve made space for them,” Horowitz said.
The latest group of dogs, makes 21 dogs the group has rescued from areas threatened by Hurricane Dorian. Last week it brought in two dogs from a shelter in Florida.