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Hurricane Harvey's homeless pets being sent across U.S. for new homes

By Sara Shayanian
Hurricane Harvey's homeless pets being sent across U.S. for new homes
Hurricane Harvey has left hundreds of pets in need of new homes. Photo By Capt. Martha Nigrelle/EPA

Sept. 1 (UPI) -- The devastating aftermath of Hurricane Harvey has left hundreds of Houston-area pets homeless and in need of shelter -- and some are being sent across the country to get new owners.

Pet shelters across Texas are currently in the process of shipping animals to locations outside of the affected areas -- to make room for displaced pets to come in as the cleanup of Harvey continues.

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Organizations outside of Texas are also doing their part to care for the new wave of homeless pets.

The Seattle Humane took in nearly two dozen pets this week and has offered to take in hundreds more from the affected areas. Elsewhere, 80 pets are being transferred to San Diego, and three Chicago centers are prepared to take 250 pets, if necessary.

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Dan Daul, of the Washington Humane Society, told Seattle's KING-TV, "The idea is to clear out the shelters in San Antonio and Dallas so that folks in Texas can safely shelter their animals there and get back to them after the catastrophe."

The National Guard alone has rescued over 300 pets thus far, with other groups like the SPCA of Texas taking in a shipment of un-owned cats -- with plans to take in hundreds more.

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Many pets are even being rescued and shipped across the country.

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Laurie Henderson, Executive Director of Pasado's Safe Haven in Seattle, has noticed a big change with how pets were handled during Hurricane Katrina and how they're being cared for now.

"Families weren't able to bring their animals with them as they were rescued from their homes, or evacuated from their homes," she said. "And as you're seeing from footage coming from Hurricane Harvey and the Houston area, families are able to bring their pets with them, which is a good thing."

The SPCA of Texas has put out a call for foster homes for pets already being sheltered in Dallas.

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