Everyday Heroes

Meet The Volunteers Who Saved Pets Left Behind In Hurricane Matthew Flooding

People were told to evacuate and leave their large animals behind.

Pinetops, North Carolina was just one of many communities heavily hit by flooding from Hurricane Matthew. People had to hurry out of their homes due to the rapidly rising flood waters, and many had to leave their pets behind.

Alex Layton (below) is a rescue volunteer for the the Wilson County Humane Society and she told ABC News, “We were told that people couldn’t take any pets or just small dogs—they had to leave big dogs and cats.” That wasn’t going to work for Alex and the team, so they set out in boats this past weekend to look for stranded animals of all types.

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Alex Layton/Facebook

The rising waters meant that the scared animals would automatically go for the highest point inside the homes that they could find. “Water was up to the doorknobs and covering some of the windows,” she said.

The teams toured the flooded areas in their boats and would often need to break into homes via windows. Some evacuees left their keys with Alex and the rescue team so they could open locked doors.

Other groups were involved in the rescue, too. The U.S. Coast Guard rescued this fellow who was paddling to safety.

Layton has set up a fund to help rebuild and get vet care for the animals in need. You can make a donation to southerland@myglnc.com through PayPal. There’s also a GoFundMe page set up. In all, 27 dogs, four cats, one horse and a chinchilla were rescued.

h/t: Little Things.