NJ animal shelter helping VT rescue shows how natural disasters affect more than just people

ByBrianne Hailey Killeen WABC logo
Thursday, July 13, 2023
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MADISON, New Jersey (WABC) -- A New Jersey animal shelter has opened its arms to pets from Vermont that have been impacted by the tragic flooding.

Recent rainstorms in Vermont have deluged residents with two months of rain in only two days, resulting in pets being displaced or lost from their homes.

St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center

Three team members, including Executive Director Tiffany Barrow, from St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center in Madison, New Jersey set out on a trip on Tuesday to Windham County Humane Society in Brattleboro, Vermont.

They were on a mission to bring all of the shelter's animals back in order to make room for more community pets that may be displaced due to the severe flooding.

"I've been with St. Hubert's for over three years and, Windham Humane Society, we've had a partnership through our WayStation program for a number of years and so they have taken transports from us," Barrow said.

Windham County Humane Society is typically a receiving shelter, however this time was different and St. Hubert's was able to come to their rescue.

So far, the St. Hubert's employees were able to make a difference for the lives of 15 cats and three dogs of all different ages by driving about eight hours round-trip to get them and bring them to safety.

Animals being secured in the truck
St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center

Although the water levels were very high and even up to the edge of some roadways, the St. Hubert's crew experienced a smooth trip both to and from Vermont.

"The back roads that we did come in to get to the shelter, we saw the water level is right up to the edge of the road, so it was not crossing over the road at that point, but it was quite impressive to see," Barrow said. "So it all stayed within the banks and didn't cross over the road and into the shelter at all but it's literally right across the street."

Floodwater in Vermont
St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center

The trip was treacherous, but the transported animals are now safe and there is room for more displaced community pets at Windham.

"They were already receiving calls as we were driving up there yesterday so they said that they were already going to start scheduling appointments and figuring out what to do next," Barrow said.

The St. Hubert's team is already prepared for the possibility that they will have to go back to Vermont and help more animals in need.

"We are absolutely gonna stay in communication with them and if they need us to come again, we will go again," Tiffany said. "It's community helping community. And, you know, whether we're right in the same state or we're a few states away, we're here to help."

St. Hubert's and Windham are encouraging people in the community to play a part in making a difference by adopting or fostering displaced pets.

"People are excited to be a part of helping another community." Tiffany said. "It makes you come together as a community, and just feel the impact."

Windham County Humane Society is taking donations for pet food and supplies, as well as prospective foster and adoption families for pets.

St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center is also seeking foster and adoption interests.

Go to sthuberts.org to see available animals. Email foster@sthuberts.org to sign up for pet fostering.


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