Responding to Texas & South Africa wildfires
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, September 2011:
AUSTIN, JOHANNESBURG-– Comparable clusters of fast-moving wildfires had contrasting outcomes for animals in Bastrop and Leander counties in Texas during the first week of September 2011 and the Gateway region of Northwest Province, South Africa, during the last week of August.
Experienced disaster relief personnel from the Austin Humane Society, Austin Pets Alive!, and the Best Friends Network evacuated about 180 dogs and cats from two animal control shelters that were jeopardized by the Texas fires, reported Best Friends Network volunteer Jessi Freud.
South African National SPCA disaster relief teams from Carletonville, Klerksdorp and Potchefsroom found that they could do little beyond euthanizing several hundred badly burned animals, frequently conflicting with local veterinarians and farmers who had difficulty accepting that the animals had little or no chance of survival, and no sale value. NSPCA information officer Chris Kuch noted that many of the farmers were uninsured, and responded to the approach of the fires by herding their animals into corrals. The effort to keep the animals from scattering also kept them from escaping to safety.