In the event of a hurricane evacuation this year, will you have a spare seat in your car? If so, the Hilton Head Humane Association would love to put it to use.
The humane association is looking for volunteers to transport and house its animals if a hurricane evacuation in needed in the area.
“It’s a big task when you have about 150 animals to take care of,” said Laura Tipton, the humane association’s adoption facilitator. “We couldn’t do it without the volunteers and staff.”
During Hurricane Matthew, the human association’s animals were evacuated for the first time in more than seven years, Tipton said.
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“Last year went really smoothly, but we definitely learned some things, as you always do when something like that happens,” she said.
In fact, the human association’s hurricane protocol is constantly being reworked and reevaluated, Tipton said.
The association started the pet evacuation process two days before Hurricane Matthew’s mandatory evacuation was called.
According to Tipton, it takes a long time to get each of the animals paperwork and medications together before leaving and handing the animals over to a volunteer.
“For instance, you have to have proof that an animal has a current rabies vaccine,” Tipton said. “If you send a pet with a volunteer to a hotel in Augusta, you need to make sure they have all the paperwork in case they ask.”
Once the human association was allowed back into its facilities, the pets were brought back to the shelter. But for one dog, the hurricane marked a new beginning when the volunteer who transported the animal decided to adopt it.
Interested in volunteering? Contact Hilton Head Humane Association at 843-681-8686 or firstname.lastname@example.org