Helping animals in Haiti after Hurricane Matthew
Hurricane Matthew hit the southwestern coast of Haiti on Tuesday 4th October, leaving devastation in its wake in a mostly rural area of the impoverished country. The storm was the strongest Caribbean hurricane in nearly a decade and the most powerful to hit Haiti in fifty two years.
When disasters strike, the impact is devastating for animals and the communities that depend on them. World Animal Protection sponsored veterinarians are on the ground in Haiti to help the animal victims of the devastating effects of Hurricane Matthew.
We’re currently assessing the needs of animals in some of the worst impacted communities, including Petit Goave, Kenscoff and the capital, Port au Prince.
The worst affected areas include medium to high populations of cattle, pigs, chickens, horses and donkeys as well as pets. Following a high wind event, chickens are especially vulnerable. Our assessment will include all animals but focus on helping chickens. We anticipate health impacts such as cuts and bruises, and trauma from other injuries or being displaced from their homes.
A woman and a child riding a donkey pass by destroyed houses after Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti. REUTERS/ Carlos Garcia Rawlins.
Like people, animals suffer both the immediate impact of the event and later become vulnerable to parasitic diseases and bacterial infections. Our experienced vets know that emergency medicine and feed is often what is urgently needed and will be prepared to help the animals.
For more than 50 years, we‘ve helped governments and communities prepare for disasters, enabling people to protect animals and rebuild their lives. Tens of millions of people worldwide are dependent on their animals – for food, to earn a living, to stay healthy, as companions, for status, and to stay safe. That’s why the lives of animals and people are fundamentally linked. To date, our disaster teams have helped over six million animals globally. Find out how you can help animals in disasters.