Wildfires are currently ravaging much of central and eastern Washington State – but individuals and organizations alike are stepping up to help the animals that have been displaced. KREM 2 News reported last night that as the fires have devoured the landscape, immediate evacuations have taken many by surprise, leaving little time to prepare for themselves or their animals.
Statewide, animal shelters and organizations are stepping up to help the animals who have been displaced by these fires. The Wenatchee Valley Humane Society was one of the first organizations to open its doors to animals in need of emergency housing. Those who have found an animal or who need assistance themselves can call Wenatchee Humane at (509) 662-9577. With this sudden influx of animals, this organization could use some help of its own – and donations to support ongoing animal relief efforts can be made here.
MEOW Cat Rescue, based in Kirkland, Washington, is also providing assistance to a cat shelter in Okanogan that had to evacuate 80 cats and kittens. Donate to this fund here. To help equine victims of the fires, Northwest Equine Network has created a page to network needed resources, including pasture, food, and hay.
The all-volunteer Washington State Animal Response Team (WASART) helps companion animals and livestock out of immediate crisis and dangerous situations. WASART has created a temporary animal shelter at Brewster Elementary School and also needs monetary donations to continue its work. The organization stated on its Facebook page last night: “Tonasket’s livestock shelter at the Rodeo Grounds has room if anyone needs it and they are also asking for hay….A previous post stated they needed volunteers, so those of you who wanted to volunteer at the Brewster emergency animals shelter may wish to contact The Nourishing Hand.”
In addition to the temporary boarding at Wenatchee Humane and WASART’s temporary shelter, there are also emergency shelters at the Tonasket Rodeo Grounds, the Okanogan Fairgrounds, and the Omak Stampede Grounds. For those who lose an animal, the animal’s information can be placed on Facebook, including sites like Lost & Found Pets Wa State, Chelan and Okanogan Wildfires Lost and Found Pets-NDARRT, and Seattle Pets Examiner, which will also be sharing and networking the animals who are displaced by these fires.
While many animals remain among the missing, animal advocates advise pet owners to be careful if their animals need transportation. Chelan and Okanogan Wildfires Lost and Found Pets-NDARRT posted on its Facebook page on Friday: “We do not recommend that you allow anyone that is not registered with the local authorities or shelters to transport animals. Sadly it is very common to have animals stolen and resold in other states because someone offered to transport animals and they never get to their destination. If you need transport or are offering transport contact local Leo or animal control wardens with information. You are also welcome to pm our page and we will pass on your info to the authorities to use as they are needing.”
If you know of a resource to add to this list, please share it in the comments below and it will be added to this article. If you are an organization that is providing direct assistance for the victims of the Washington wildfires, please email your information to TLCampion@gmail.com.