The BC SPCA is escalating rescue efforts to help animals impacted by B.C.’s raging wildfires.
“Our staff and volunteers have been very active in supporting emergency services in affected areas, but as the wildfires spread we are escalating our involvement,” said Lorie Chortyk, general manager of community relations for the BC SPCA.
“The animal evacuation centre being operated by the Prince George Humane Society with the support of the SPCA is now full so the BC SPCA has set up a second Evacuation Dog Care Site in the Duchess Park Warehouse at 747 Winnipeg Street in Prince George,” says Chortyk. “There are currently 35 dogs in care but the facility has the capacity to handle more incoming dogs.” Dog owners will be referred to the SPCA-run centre by local Emergency Social Services personnel.
The BC SPCA has also deployed a number of special constables from its cruelty investigations department to a basecamp in Clearwater, where they will be providing support in rescuing animals trapped behind fire evacuation lines.
“In addition we have transferred more than 130 homeless animals in our care from SPCA shelters in the Cariboo region to our facilities in the Interior, the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island to free up space for temporary emergency sheltering for animals impacted by the fires,” says Chortyk.
She said the BC SPCA has also contacted large pet supply companies about shipping urgently needed pet food and supplies to evacuation centres.
In areas where evacuated families are seeking temporary shelter the BC SPCA is also offering free spaces for kids in their week-long summer camps (as capacity allows).
“The situation and the needs are changing on a daily basis, but the BC SPCA is in regular contact with provincial and local ESS officials and our staff and volunteers are ready and willing to help however we can,” said Chortyk.
The BC SPCA has set up a special online emergency donation site (spca.bc.ca/emergencyalert) to help animals affected by the wildfires.
The BC SPCA is a non-profit organization funded primarily by public donations. Our mission is to prevent cruelty and to promote the welfare of animals through a wide range of services, including cruelty investigations, emergency rescue and treatment, sheltering and adoption of homeless and abused animals, humane education, advocacy, farm animal welfare, spay/neuter programs, and wildlife rescue and rehabilitation.