PALM BEACH, FLORIDA, August 19, 2022 — American Humane, the country’s first national humane organization, deployed to Eastern Kentucky last week in the wake of catastrophic flooding that killed dozens of people and displaced thousands of residents from their homes. American Humane’s Rescue Team rushed to the impacted area on one of its mobile rescue units which is one of three donated by internationally renowned philanthropist, Lois Pope. This huge, 50-foot rescue unit makes it possible for American Humane first responders to be on the ground and providing aid to animals and relief organizations in real time.
“Thanks to the compassion of Lois Pope, our dedicated team of first responders was able to answer the urgent call for help and deploy to Eastern Kentucky where they are saving countless animal lives,” said American Humane president and CEO Dr. Robin Ganzert. “With the overwhelming generosity of our great friends like Lois, our Rescue Team is able to help bring relief to the people of Eastern Kentucky who are struggling to provide food and shelter to their pets.”
American Humane strategically stations six rescue units across the United States that can deploy the Rescue Team anywhere disaster strikes the country within an impressive 24-hour time span. The units hold up to 100 animals and are utilized throughout the year, especially during the summer months when wildfires, tornadoes, hurricanes and floods occur all too frequently.
In Kentucky, our Rescue Team was able to help a desperate Breathitt County family who lost nearly everything as the flood waters rose, swamping not only their home but also overtaking their dogs, one of whom had just given birth. As told by resident Greg Stivers, he and his wife and their 11-year-old son were able to save themselves, their dogs and their newborn puppies only through quick action and a little bit of luck. As the raging waters were swirling around them, Greg placed the newborn pups in a cooler to keep them from drowning. He then was able to use a hammer to bust a hole into the attic so his family and the dogs could escape the waters which were now neck high. A rescue helicopter was soon hovering overhead, which took the family, but not their dogs to dry land and safety. Immediately after the floodwaters receded, the family was able to rescue the dogs and pups from the attic where they were suffering heat exhaustion and dehydration.
Thankfully soon after, the American Humane Rescue team arrived and was able to supply clean water, medicines and food to the exhausted and terrified animals.
When asked about his experience with American Humane, Stivers said, “They came out to check on the animals and they gave us some dog food. They’re really nice people, friendly, and apparently, they really love animals or they wouldn’t be with American Humane. They gave us food, they gave us flea and tick medicine. They really helped us.”
While in Kentucky, the American Humane Rescue Team scaled ravines, navigated downed-power lines and unimaginable destruction, and worked ‘round the clock to rescue animals and provide basic necessities to these helpless and homeless animals.
“This is but one of many disasters we will respond to in the coming weeks, and we just can’t thank our supporters enough for helping us fulfill our mission of being the first to serve whenever and wherever animals are in need,” said Ganzert.
About American Humane
American Humane is the country’s first national humane organization and the world’s largest certifier of animal welfare, overseeing the humane treatment of more than one billion animals across the globe each year. Founded in 1877, American Humane has been First to Serve™ the cause of animals and for 145 years has been at the forefront of virtually every major advance in the humane movement. For more information or to support our lifesaving work, please visit www.AmericanHumane.org, follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and subscribe to our channel on YouTube for the latest breaking news and features about the animals with whom we share our Earth.