Construction complete of second mobile pet shelter

Halen Doughty

The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry unveils a second mobile pet shelter that can be used during emergencies. Construction was completed on the second shelter after the Banfield Foundation donated more than $72,000 for the project.

The Banfield Foundation’s generous donation allows Louisiana another vehicle to co-locate people and their pets during evacuations,” said Louisiana Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Mike Strain. “When people are in harm’s way, it gives them a sense of comfort knowing their household pets are safe and nearby once an evacuation takes place.”

During disasters, victims have refused assistance if their pets could not be accommodated. The LDAF can accommodate up to 3,000 pets at mega shelters throughout the state. The mobile pet shelter is used in the event of natural disasters like the 2016 floods, when sheltering facilities are not available. It can also be used in search and rescue missions.

This year was no stranger to disasters—extreme flooding, hurricanes and wildfires destroyed communities, homes and lives. We saw first-hand the devastating impact that disasters have on people and their beloved pets and we understand the deep connection between pets and their owners,” said Kim Van Syoc, Executive Director of the Banfield Foundation. “By partnering with the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry, we can help ensure pets will be protected in the future and pet owners will have peace of mind knowing their pets will make it home safely.”

This new mobile pet shelter is a 48-foot transport truck equipped with up to 55 metal cages, feed, water bowls, and a wash down system. The new truck is similar to the one that rolled out during the 2015 hurricane season. Upon request, the mobile shelter will be available to other states during a disaster.

The LDAF is the designated state agency for evacuating, transporting, and sheltering household pets during disasters. The Banfield Foundation is the charitable arm of the Banfield Pet Hospital, which launched a disaster relief grant program to ensure pets impacted by disasters receive the care they need.

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