Evacuated Pets Housed by Pasadena Humane Society

Cindy Garcia

More than 350 animals were evacuated from the fire in the La Canada Flintridge area to an evacuation center by the Pasadena Humane Society on Aug. 27.

The evacuation center accommodated a broad variety of domestic and wild animals such as dogs, cats, chinchillas, guinea pigs, rabbits, ducks, parrots, wild cats, sneaks and spiders, said the Vice President of Community Resources Ricky Whitman.

Some animals were stressed, scared and confused during the time they were sent to the evacuation center.

“Animals rely on scent, so every scent that they had was different,” said Whitman. “They could smell the fire and see things that were really unfamiliar to them and their normal patterns were totally changed.”

Some stressed animals were calmed down with a homeopathic solution called “rescue remedy” in substitutions of tranquilizers. A parrot was killed during the evacuation and no other animals were injured.

Over 400 active volunteers helped out in the center, working 12-hour shifts in order to maintain the shelter be open 24 hours. All the volunteers were previously trained to serve in natural disasters and emergency situations.

Some of the Pasadena Humane Society staff helped out in Hurricane Katrina, which prepared them for the fire evacuation.
“We had first hand experience [in Hurricane Katrina] which helped us prepare for this,” said Whitman.

The Pasadena Humane Society had stored food, water, tents, medication and blankets to meet the animal’s basic needs. A 35-foot mobile home was also available to house and
transport animals.

SPCA LA (Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Los Angeles), the Irvine Animal Shelter, Petco and Petsmart contributed to assure the animal’s safety by providing additional space for the animals in adoption, volunteers and donations.

Whitman said, “We couldn’t have done it without their work and support .Animal lovers come together at times like this.”
The Pasadena Humane Society is a private non-profit organization and is open for any type of donations. For more information visit www.pasadenahumane.org or call (626) 792-7151.