Disasters injure and kill millions of animals each year. For 55 years, we deployed to disaster zones to assist animals – and reminded governments to take responsibility for them too.
Our history protecting animals in disasters
When disasters hit, animals experience the same terrible effects as people: injury, starvation, thirst, displacement, illness and stress.
We moved fast to protect animals affected by earthquakes, floods, typhoons and other disasters.
We provided food, water, medical care, and other emergency assistance to animals in need.
We evacuated animals from danger, and reunited animals and owners that had been separated.
Helping animals helps people
When animals die during disasters, it has a devastating impact on the people who rely on them for companionship and economic status
More than 1 billion of the world’s poorest people depend on animals for food, transport and livelihoods.
Disaster risk reduction
As well as responding to disasters, we worked year-round to help countries prepare and reduce the impact on animals and their owners.
Through our work, we encouraged governments, international bodies, and local and national partners to include animals in their plans, policies and practice. We:
- lobbied and publicly campaigned for animal-inclusive disaster risk reduction strategies at the international and national level
- conducted training activities with local government officials
- trained partner organisations on animal rescue and disaster management through workshops and PrepVet, an online course we developed
- helped animal owners in disaster prone areas learn how to care for their animals.
Governments: don’t forget them
Governments must take urgent steps to protect both people and animals by including animals in their disaster plans.
Governments and the global disaster response community know that protecting animals helps people rebuild their lives following a disaster.
Yet animals are rarely included in national disaster plans and investments, and their needs are rarely factored into relief operations.
The message is clear: don’t forget animals in global discussions on disaster risk reduction, disaster plans and investments
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