A team of six Arizona Humane Society staff members made the overnight trip to El Paso, Texas this past Friday to meet a team from Louisiana SPCA. The New Orleans-based rescue shelter was losing power and water. They needed to move pets out. Fast.

AHS’ Project Reachout Program allows AHS to transfer pets in from partner shelters in the state and across the country when space at AHS allows. Due to a highly successful adoption event in which 384 pets were adopted (courtesy of longtime AHS supporters Stuart and Ted Tufty), we had open kennels and were eager to offer assistance to these pets who had nowhere else to turn.


workers loading in pet crate to van

After driving all night, our team members met with the Louisiana team early Saturday morning and picked up the 22 dogs and 14 cats. After giving the pets a chance to stretch their legs, our team turned right back around to bring them home to Arizona.

This isn’t the first time we’ve made this trip. In 2005, AHS deployed its Emergency Response Team to Louisiana as part of the relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina. At that time, more than 200 pets made their way back to Arizona.

We’re happy to report that once again, our drivers and the Louisiana pets have made it back safely. Now that the dogs and cats have had time to acclimate, they are all currently undergoing medical exams at our Second Chance Animal Trauma Hospital™. We’ll soon be putting healthy pets up for adoption and look for Foster Hero homes for those who need some additional treatment.

As the state’s designated responder for animals in distress during a natural disaster, we’re no strangers to jumping in to help during an emergency. So far this year, AHS has been able to transfer in 843 pets from other Arizona shelters and from disasters like the Telegraph wildfire, Backbone wildfire and Gila Bend flooding.

But we can’t do any of it without the support of generous animal lovers like you. To help with future emergencies, please consider donating to our Disaster Relief Fund, so we can save more lives together.

September 8, 2021