Raleigh, NC — AKC Pet Disaster Relief, a national program spearheaded by AKC Reunite that is dedicated to keeping pets and their owners safe in the aftermath of tornadoes, floods, wildfires and other natural or civil disasters, presented its first emergency trailer in New York City to officials from the NYC Office of Emergency Management and the American Red Cross Greater New York Region in a ceremony held today at AKC Meet the Breeds®.

“Pets are a part of our families, and they should be part of our family emergency plans.”

Joseph Esposito, Commissioner of NYC Emergency Management.

AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailers help to create a safe, temporary home-base for at least 65 pets immediately after a disaster is declared. After recent tragedies like Hurricane Sandy, emergency preparedness has become even more important. With AKC Pet Disaster Relief, New York City will be able to effectively help the pets and their owners affected by such disasters in the future. The purchase of the trailer was made possible by more than $22,000 in grants from the American Kennel Club and AKC Reunite, the nation’s largest non-profit pet identification and recovery service.

“This trailer donated today will provide animal care services during the first critical hours if a disaster ever hits New York City or the surrounding areas,” said Tom Sharp, AKC Reunite CEO. “Safe, effective pet sheltering solutions in times of disaster are incredibly important, and AKC Reunite is pleased to help communities across the nation prepare by mobilizing AKC Pet Disaster Relief.”

The trailers house and deliver essential supplies such as fans, lighting and generators; cleaning supplies; maintenance items; and animal care items including crates and carries, AKC Reunite microchips and an AKC Reunite universal microchip scanner as well as bowls, collars and leashes. These supplies can be used as co-location shelters, where people can evacuate with their pets, as well as emergency animal shelters for displaced animals.

“Pets are a part of our families, and they should be part of our family emergency plans,” said Joseph Esposito, Commissioner of NYC Emergency Management. “We are happy to work with the American Kennel Club to have a safe place to house our pets during emergencies, because their safety matters just as much as our own.”

“The American Red Cross knows all too well the impact that disasters can have on our neighbors, including our four-legged friends. Anywhere between five and 25 times a day in Greater NY, the Red Cross provides compassionate humanitarian relief following local emergencies,” said Josh Lockwood, CEO, American Red Cross Greater New York Region. “Thank you to the American Kennel Club and their donors for helping us offer additional peace of mind and comfort to communities when they need it most.”

Individuals, corporations and other interested parties can donate to trailer projects in local areas or across the country. Donations are tax deductible and accepted online. Approved organizations that raise a minimum of $1,000 will have their logo featured on the AKC Pet Disaster Relief trailer.

Learn more about how to get involved online with AKC Pet Disaster Relief or contact us at 919-816-3980 and relief@akcreunite.org.