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DogVacay Partners With American Humane Association To House Displaced Pets

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When a natural disaster strikes, as families flee their homes, they discover that many relief shelters don’t take pets. They’re left with a wrenching decision: Stay behind or leave their pet.

“During Hurricane Sandy, an estimated 30 million animals, including 14.5 million dogs and 15.3 million cats, were caught in the path of one of the worst natural disasters in our lifetime,” said Aaron Hirschhorn, founder and CEO of DogVacay.

Related: Disaster Strikes! Do You Have An Emergency Plan For Your Dog?

In Louisiana, during Hurricane Katrina, local rescues estimated that 104,000 pets were left behind and 44 percent of pet owners chose not to evacuate so that they didn’t have to leave their pets.

DogVacay, an online service that connects people to pet-related services like pet sitting and grooming, partnered with the American Humane Association’s Red Star Rescue program. Together, they will help displaced pets find temporary housing with a qualified pet sitter.

Related: Phone Numbers Every Pet Parent Should Have On Hand

Here’s how the program works—and how you can get involved:

  • DogVacay sitters volunteer for the program, and then complete online American Humane Association certification training. Upon completion, certified sitters earn Star Hero badges for their DogVacay profiles.
  • Starting November 1, if the Red Star Rescue team is called in to respond to a disaster, DogVacay will help find temporary housing for pets. If possible, the Red Star Rescue team will connect displaced pet owners with DogVacay sitters through DogVacay’s customer care natural disaster hotline.
  • Those affected by the disaster can sign their pets up with DogVacay to ensure all information and details are updated and correct.
  • DogVacay’s customer care support will facilitate temporary housing by connecting the disaster victims with certified sitters.
  • Displaced pets won’t be responsible for payment: DogVacay will cover the costs of temporary housing for displaced pets at a rate of $30 per night, per pet, to the sitter, for up to 10 nights. (Additional pets from one household will be at a rate of $10 per night.)

Interested in learning more? Visit the DogVacay Disaster Relief Program to get tips or to start your certification training.


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