Animal Victims Of California Fires Looking For Their Owners Who Left Them Behind [VIDEO]

Animal Victims Of California Fires Looking For Their Owners Who Left Them Behind [VIDEO]

When Northern California experiences fires every year, it is always devastating. But this year’s fires marked the record books with the number of casualties and burns going on at the same time. The human toll is important, but I thought we might also highlight just how many pets had to be left behind by owners just so they could get out of the path of the blaze: We are talking dogs, cats and also big one like horses.

There has been an outpouring of volunteers in Sonoma County who have stepped up to offer their services. There have been hundreds of calls that have flooded in, asking what they could do to help out the stray animals wandering around wounded and looking for their owners. They have fielded ‘hundreds’ of calls in recent days. One of the largest number of injured animals are cats, since unlike their furry counterparts, dogs – they don’t come when they are called usually and had to be left behind by fleeing families.

The majority of injuries have to do with smoke inhalation from the fires, as well as burned paws from trying to navigate the hot ash.

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John Skeel is 52 and a director of Sonoma County Animal Services who knows about the plight of these animals, as he himself has lost his own home to the raging fires, yet continues to work non-stop over the last few days to save as many pets from dying as possible. He lost his own home to the devastating wildfires rampaging through the area, but has been working around the clock since Sunday night to help save pets in need.

The volunteers’ units that have arrived in the area have come from all over the state, with many of them from the San Jose area, looking to do whatever they can to help people with their animals, with many offering their own homes – even for horses – until the owners can be located and the animals returned to them.

The volunteers have taken up to as many as 500 horses who were without a home caused by the the destructive wildfires. The fires have killed 31 people so far and there are plenty more who are still missing.

Skeel spoke with the media:

“This has been surreal – you don’t expect it. Because many people are under evacuation orders and had to get out of their homes quickly and can’t return, we’re getting literally hundreds of calls to do welfare checks. We go to the address, check on the dog, check on the cat, check on the fish, make sure they’ve got food, water and then we leave them.”

Any effort by these people is just amazing. They are truly good Samaritans who are lifting the burdens of those who have just lost everything to the fires. Every little bit counts.

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