Disaster and Storm Updates 2017-09-20T11:51:22+00:00


AKC Pet Disaster Relief Recipients – Click map for details

Updated 12:00PM EST 9/20/17
Tracking Hurricane Maria and Current Relief Efforts

Our thoughts and prayers go out to those in the path of Hurricane Maria as it moves through the Caribbean.  AKC Reunite was in touch with shelters in Puerto Rico after Irma skirted by the Island. They endured well and were grateful the hurricane was not worse for the island. Now they are facing Maria. We will reach out to our contacts another time after this hurricane passes to see if/how we can help. Again, we send continued prayers to the people and their pets facing this devastating storm.

To all of the dog clubs and individuals that have donated to AKC Reunite in response to the recent disasters…. THANK YOU! You can see the impressive list of the donors and pledges on our website at: http://www.akcreunite.org/hurricanehelp. To date, we have received over $350,000 in donations in response to Harvey and Irma and western wildfires.

AKC Reunite funds are going toward the general pet care and supplies needed to safely shelter displaced while their families rebuild and find themselves in a better situation to care for their pets. All of the shelters we are assisting are beyond capacity and each is in need of very specific items like bowls, or cleaning supplies, or specific types of crates, or Kong toys to help ease dogs’ distress. AKC Reunite is happy to help with these needs.

We have also learned that while taking care of the influx of animals, these organizations are also receiving an influx of items they do not need or have not requested. They are calling this issue “the disaster after the disaster.” The shelters are already out of extra space and do not know where to store or what to do with the excess of items. This is why AKC Reunite is diligently researching what is needed on a case-by-case basis to ensure our funds are being put to the best use possible.

AKC Reunite has donated much-needed supplies and made cash grants to major animal sheltering organizations in the following impacted counties: Harris (Houston), Galveston, Brazoria (South of Galveston), Jefferson (Beaumont and Port Arthur) and Aransas (Rockport). We have also donated to shelters impacted by Hurricane Irma in the Jacksonville and southeastern areas of Florida.  We have already donated $100,000 to first-responding organizations, with more on the way.

Again, thank you to everyone for their compassion and generosity to help so many pets in need.


Updated 4:00PM EST 9/14/17
Hurricane Irma

Polk County Emergency Services in Florida set up two emergency shelters with the crates and other supplies from their AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer donation. This allowed people to seek refuge with their pets, away from the dangers of the hurricane. The power went out for a while, but all were safe with the added comfort of their pets alongside them.

AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer arrives to set up pet sheltering supplies.

Shelter check in, many people brought their pets!

Pets helped the shelter feel more like home, but so did the emergency shelter staff! They made a cake and sang Happy Birthday to make sure these two boys didn’t miss celebrating their birthdays!

The path of Irma’s destruction is widespread, and we are still assessing what first responders and animal services agencies need to care for pets displaced from the storm. We have heard back from a major animal shelter in Puerto Rico – and thankfully the facility did not suffer any damage and they have the supplies they need for the influx of pets.

AKC Reunite is grateful the emergency shelters across the Florida encouraged people to evacuate with their pets. We strongly believe one of the primary reasons people complied to evacuation orders was because people did not need to struggle finding last-minute pet care/sheltering options, or feel the need to stay behind to care for their dogs and cats.

AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailers continue to be on stand-by for Hurricane Irma in Pamlico County, NC, Rockdale, GA and Greenville, SC to provide assistance in their home communities, or to accept pets displaced in Florida or be deployed by Emergency Management teams in other areas. We have not received word of their deployment. Other trailers available for deployment are Atlanta-Fulton County, GA, Americus, GA, Spalding County, GA and Cumberland County, NC.

Hurricane Harvey

Tri City Animal Shelter Trailer in Cedar Hill, TX is still deployed in Port Arthur, TX to help with the overflow of pets displaced by Hurricane Harvey. Wilson County, TN just returned from Rockport, TX to help as well. Harris County Animal Shelter is using its new AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer to set up secondary shelters.

This relief effort will go on for months and AKC Reunite is carefully (yet quickly) vetting pet relief needs as we are made aware of them. The long recovery is just beginning for Texas, and these donations are helping, with over $70,000 in cash and supplies already donated to shelters in the disaster zone including Harris County Animal Services, the Humane Society of Southeast Texas, the Humane Society of Aransas County and Brazoria County SPCA.


In addition to the AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer donation program, the AKC Reunite Canine Support and Relief Fund can provide resources, support and other assistance to not-for-profit animal shelters and similar not-for-profit organizations that provide care for pets displaced because Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Please call 212-696-8343 or email sns@akc.org if you become aware of specific needs for non-profit sheltering relief for companion animals in the area.