Editor's Note: The following information was provided by the Pennsylvania State Animal Response Team via The Chester County Emergency Services Dept.
As Hurricane Sandy made its way towards the Delaware Valley and east coast, the State Animal Response Teams (CARTs) located in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties prepared to assist local residents and their pets.
The County Animal Response Teams (CARTs) mobilized equipment and called on their experienced volunteers to set-up temporary animal shelters for residents who needed to evacuate their homes. Working with the American Red Cross the CARTs set up temporary animal shelters in close proximity to the human shelters. This allows for residents to care for their pets during this emergency and to safely evacuate with their pets.
Temporary pet shelters began set-up on Sunday, October 28, 2012. The Bucks County shelter located at Palisades High School in Kitnersville sheltered 8 animals (1 cat and 7 dogs) through Friday, November 2, 2012.
Volunteers are now helping with kennel arrangements for those families still in need. Delaware County set up their shelter with the assistance of the American Humane Association located at Chester Park. Two dogs and 1 kitten were in-shelter; Chester County set up two shelters located at Avon Grove High School in West Grove and Lionville Middle School in Exton which housed 8 pets – 3 cats and 5 dogs; Montgomery County had three shelters across the county. Pottstown High School sheltered 3 animals – 1 cat, 1 parakeet and 1 dog; Cheltenham High School housed 4 dogs, and Norristown High School which remained open until Friday, November 2, 2012 had 17 animals - 5 cats, 3 kittens, 7 dogs, and 2 ferrets.
The Philadelphia CART also opened three shelters throughout Philadelphia County, sheltering a total of 40 animals between the three facilities. Roxborough High School sheltered 1 turtle, 1 spider, 1 cat and 1 dog; Fels High School housed 8 cats and 7 dogs and West Philadelphia High School helped 8 dogs and 13 cats. Philadelphia CARTs’ shelters remained open through Wednesday, October 31, 2012.
Donations were made to the Chester County CART from PetCo and Sam’s Club both in Exton. Montgomery CART received donations of dog food, cat food and cat litter from Pet Valu in Audubon, Perk Valley Pet Eatery in Trappe and PetCo in Pottsgrove. Upper Bucks had help from Peppy Pet, Animal Lifeline, Bucks Co SPCA, Pawsitive Paws pet training, Quakertown Wal-Mart, Philadoptables and Holiday House Pet Resort.
The CARTs would like to thank everyone for their generous donations to help the community.
About CARTs: County Animal Response Teams were formed as an initiative the PA State Animal Response Team (PASART) a private non-profit organization which receives the majority of its funding from the federal government through the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA). CARTs consists of volunteers from all walks of life - from experienced emergency responders, veterinary technicians, animal trainers and handlers to other men and women concerned with the welfare of animals. CARTs are based on the principals of the Incident Command System developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA),