AKC has provided disaster relief in recent years by coordinating efforts to provide food and supplies for displaced dogs in hurricanes, tornados, wildfires, and other calamities. AKC’s focus on helping dogs affected by such crises began with a major effort to help search and rescue dogs working the rubble after the 2001 terrorist attacks in New York City and now includes the AKC Reunite disaster relief project to outfit and deploy assistance trailers throughout the country.
The trailers are true grass roots efforts organized by regional dog clubs that raise the initial funds for trailers stocked with emergency supplies to help pets displaced by local catastrophes. CCKC members have joined the effort with a campaign to bring a trailer to Southwestern Ohio. Total cost of the unit is $22 thousand. CCKC must raise the initial $12 thousand, and grants from national breed clubs and AKC will provide the additional $10 thousand.
CCKC is working with TriState CART the animal response team that will house and deploy the trailer, to raise the start-up money. TriState CART covers Hamilton, Butler, Warren, Clermont, Clinton, Highland, Brown, and Adams, the counties in Ohio’s Region 3 emergency management area.
The AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer is stocked with essential supplies to house at least 65 pets the first 72 hours after authorities declare a disaster. The trailer has lighting and is wired for electricity to run off either a generator or 110v power supply. The contents are based on North Carolina’s State Animal Response Team expertise in handling hurricanes, floods, fires and tornados.
Typical contents include:
AKC Reunite depends on local and national clubs and other donors to purchase and support the disaster relief trailers. Dozens of clubs have responded, and the project has placed more than 50 trailers throughout the country. Ohio currently has two units, one in Delaware County near Columbus, and one in Stark County in the northeastern corner of the state.
Federal law requires local emergency management agencies to have an approved disaster plan in case of catastrophes that strike their communities, including provisions for people and their pets. The federal government responds to large events such as floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes, but there can be a gap of days before they arrive. AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailers can help local emergency management agencies provide animal care services during the first 72 hours following a disaster so that pets are safe and owners don’t put themselves in jeopardy to save a pet.
More information is available at the AKC reunite site . Donations can be made at the website or by mail to AKC Reunite Disaster Relief program and can be earmarked for the CCKC campaign.