After an explosion shook East Harlem on Wednesday, families living in nearby buildings were given only a few minutes to collect their belongings - including their pets - and get out.
Pet parents not at home when buildings were evacuated had to wait until Thursday before they were allowed to return. With help from the Mayor’s Alliance of NYC’s Animals and their program Helping Pets and People in Crisis, pet owners were allowed back into their destroyed apartments on Thursday to look for any animals which were left behind or may have escaped.
On their blog, The Mayor’s Alliance of NYC’s Animals says “Inside the building, the collateral damage was devastating: the debris, the shattered windows, and the stench. With strong determination and flashlights, the Alliance team searched for each animal and found them hiding and clearly traumatized by all they had gone through.”
Several animals have been reunited with their owners. Others are being cared for temporarily by Animal Haven. Supplies are being provided by Animal Care & Control of NYC and the ASPCA.
The Alliance remarked on their blog that during their search for animals, Con Ed remained nearby measuring possible gas leaks to make sure the building remained safe.
A hotline has been set up for those needing help finding or caring for a pet impacted by the explosion in East Harlem. Call the NYC Disaster Relief Pet Hotline at 866-816-4804 for help or if you would like to foster, volunteer or donate to help the animals. Donations to the Mayors Alliance for NYC’s Animals can also be made online by clicking here.
For updates, follow the Mayor’s Alliance of NYC’s Animals on Facebook.
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