Hurricane Ian tore its way through South Florida almost a week ago, but rescue efforts continue as residual flood waters still affect areas across the state. Residents are waiting for flood waters to recede while the water in some places continues to rise.
With widespread, week-long power outages, photos of people and their precious pets being rescued can only now be shared.
Unfortunately, most hurricane shelters do not allow pets, so those in the path of a hurricane can sometimes be faced with an incredibly difficult decision: stay in your home and ride out the storm with your furry family members, or seek refuge in a shelter and be forced to leave your pets behind.
Many pet parents may think this decision is a no-brainer, but they have surely never faced a life-threatening force of nature like Hurricane Ian. It was a spectacularly strong storm that made landfall just shy of a category five. The impact of the high winds and rainfall was catastrophic and caused massive amounts of destruction, plus rapid, rising flood waters all across the state of Florida.
However, local communities continue to come together to take care of their own. These photos were posted on the Orange County, Florida Government Facebook Page and show residents and their furry family members being taken to safety.
The Orange County Fire Rescue and the Sheriff’s Department are continuing to conduct water rescues after Hurricane Ian, as many roads remain impassable due to flooding.
Though shelters have been preparing for an inevitable influx of animals, resources are already running low from so many people no longer being able to take care of their pets post-storm.
So many houses experienced such severe damage that residents are being forced to flee while they find a new place to live or stay somewhere else while they make necessary repairs.
But because so many people are struggling to secure pet-friendly accommodations, local Florida shelters are filling up fast. This is in addition to the pets that got separated from their families during the turmoil of the storm.
But even from far away, you can help. Organizations like ours are raising funds for the animals affected by hurricane Ian. You can click here to make a contribution and support our efforts to send life-saving food and supplies.
In the midst of heartache and tragedy, it’s uplifting to see communities coming together to take care of their own.
Featured Image: Facebook