ASPCA Rescues Animal Victims of Hurricane Harvey through a STAR (State of Texas Assistance Request) in Hardin County

ASPCA response team conducts water and land rescues, establishes emergency shelter in Sour Lake, Texas for displaced pets
September 5, 2017

Sour Lake, Texas—Through a STAR (State of Texas Assistance Request), the ASPCA® (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) has deployed its disaster response team to conduct water and land rescues, as well as establish an emergency shelter for displaced animal victims in Hardin County, Texas. The ASPCA is being supported by the Houston SPCA with critical sheltering supplies from their distribution center.

The ASPCA will manage the emergency shelter—located at Sour Lake Elementary School—and provide ongoing care for displaced animals rescued in the community until they can be reunited with their owners. Residents who need assistance with recovering a pet from their home or with temporary sheltering for their pets are encouraged to contact their local emergency management agency.

“Our responders have been in the field rescuing dogs, cats, and birds, and bringing them back to safety,” said Tim Rickey, vice president of ASPCA Field Investigations and Response. “We are encouraged to see so many pets already being reunited with their families. The ASPCA will continue to respond to incoming requests to help pet owners locate their lost pets, provide those pets with the care they need and do everything we can to reunite them with their owners.”

The ASPCA has assisted in the relocation of hundreds of animals displaced by the storm from Galveston, Beaumont and Corpus Christi to other parts of Texas and Louisiana, as well as to the Northeast, including the ASPCA Adoption Center. In support of the Houston SPCA, the ASPCA deployed water rescue teams to Beaumont in Jefferson County to assist in search-and-rescue efforts by boat, as well as provided critical sheltering supplies and dispatched its mobile medical unit to help injured storm animals. Since the storm, the ASPCA has been actively engaging several municipalities in both Texas and Louisiana to deploy much-needed responders to Harvey-impacted areas.

The ASPCA Field Investigations and Response team deploys nationwide to assist in relocation, search-and-rescue, sheltering and placement of animals during disaster situations including wildfires, tornadoes, and floods. The team also works closely with local agencies across the country to help enhance their animal response capabilities through grants and training opportunities. In 2016, the ASPCA rescued nearly 1,600 animals from disaster situations and responded to eight disasters – including Hurricane Matthew and the wildfire in Lake County, California.

For the latest updates on the ASPCA's response for Hurricane Harvey, please visit