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HomeGerman HousingAnimals in floods. They were also victims of the floods in Germany

Animals in floods. They were also victims of the floods in Germany

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Animals in floods were also victims of the flood. In Trier, the helpers managed a special evacuation campaign. They were able to save more than 60 pets.

Animals in flooded roads, fields and forests: The habitat of many animal species has been destroyed by the floods and also claims many animal victims. Animal protection associations, animal shelters and animal owners in the flood regions are also badly affected.

The German Animal Welfare Association expressed its dismay at the extent of the devastating storm on Friday. He fears that animal shelters and animal lovers will face enormous challenges that are currently hardly foreseeable.

The fire brigade started a special evacuation campaign in Trier yesterday. On Friday night, she brought more than 60 pets to safety from the flooded Ehrang district. Pet owners who had to leave their homes quickly on Thursday because of the flood would have feared for their pets, said Prime Minister Malu Dreyer (SPD) in Trier on Friday.

Dogs, cats and other four-legged friends are now temporarily housed in the Trier-Zewen animal shelter. The Rhineland-Palatinate head of government said of the rescue operation: “It is important for people that they simply see that their very personal concerns are also being looked at.”

Ponies rescued from the floods

The animal rescue Essen already pointed out yesterday on its Facebook page that animal owners can contact the control center in Essen at any time if pets or farm animals are trapped due to the water mass and have to be evacuated or rescued. They went out for multiple missions.

In the night from Thursday to Friday during the floods in Germany, for example, a concerned pony owner in Linnich, Düren district, alerted the Essen animal rescue service. At around midnight, she asked for the evacuation of her nine ponies, trapped in the flood, waist-high. Around three o’clock in the morning, two ponies were spotted in the paddock about a kilometer away and brought safely to shore.

The strong current made it no longer possible for the animal rescuers to save more ponies from the flooded paddock. The remaining seven ponies, however, could have saved themselves on a hill where they were safe at the time.


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Even wild animals in dire need

As the German Animal Welfare Association announced, many wild animals are also in great need. There are currently many young animals that cannot get to safety or cannot get to safety quickly enough. In addition to small animals such as rabbits, hares and young birds, larger species such as deer are also affected.

The Animal Welfare Association asks walkers and dog owners to stay away from the water and the banks, if possible, because the hiding places there for the wild animals have become smaller or no longer exist. This could lead to deer or other wild animals fleeing into the water in a panic and, depending on the current and the environment, ultimately drowning, although they can actually swim well.

Zoos and animal enclosures also affected

The water masses have also made their way into the animal enclosures and zoos in the flood regions since Wednesday. At the Gertrudenhof adventure farm in Cologne, the animals stood knee-deep in the water.

As the umbrella organization, the German Animal Welfare Association would now do everything in its power to be able to help in the best possible way. They also hope for the support of animal lovers across the country.

What do I do if I find an abandoned pet?

  • Please do not try to catch the animal on your own. Injured and traumatized animals can be extremely frightened and put themselves in greater danger, for example in the flood or walking on a busy street. If they feel threatened, they might snap, scratch, or bite too. 
  • Please contact an animal welfare association in the area and ask for expert support. In an emergency, call the fire brigade or the police. Many professional animal rescues are currently helping in the crisis area and can be contacted. 
  • Make a note of the address where you saw the animal. If it is safe to do so, take a photo of the animal. Many owners search for their missing animals on social media. 
  • If the animal is very trusting and is looking to be close by itself, you may be able to take it to an animal welfare association or a nearby veterinarian so that they can check whether the animal is microchipped and registered. But be careful: even a supposedly trusting animal can react unpredictably in an unfamiliar situation. Seeking expert help is always the safest way.

What do I do if I find an injured pet?

Keep calm and call the nearest vet or clinic right away. The police can also help you to identify the veterinarian on duty or the nearest veterinary clinic. If you have a blanket, you can carefully place the animal on it or – if necessary – carefully fix its head with the blanket. 

Always be careful that the animal does not accidentally hurt you out of defense, because it is afraid or in pain. Therefore, touch it as little as possible. If the animal is unconscious, start with the ABCD scheme (clear airways, ventilate, compression / pressure, visit a veterinary clinic) , if necessary – preferably under the guidance of the vet by telephone .

What do I do if I find a dead pet?

Many dogs and cats are desperately wanted and the owners want certainty about the whereabouts of their beloved pets. Therefore, if possible, take a dead animal to an animal welfare association or veterinarian to check whether the animals are microchipped and registered. In this way, the owner can be identified and informed. 
If that doesn’t work, take a photo, write down the address and notify the nearest animal welfare association or veterinarian.

Can I let my outdoor cat out again and go for a walk with my dog ​​as usual if I live in an area affected by flooding?

Even after the flood, it can be dangerous for pets outside due to knee-high mud and uneven, sagging floors, for example. Since oil, gasoline and diesel could have leaked in many places and electrical lines may also be exposed as soon as electricity flows again, we ask you not to let your outdoor cat out for the time being. When you go for a walk with your dog, make sure that he does not pick up anything and clean his paws thoroughly afterwards.

Can I support animal shelters with donations in kind?

Please contact your local animal shelter or check the corresponding social media profiles before you bring in donations in kind. Many animal shelters are overwhelmed by the willingness of the population to help, but they also reach their limits and have no storage space for donations in kind, for example. 

TIP: Many animal shelters post exactly whether and what is still needed.

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Michelle Halterman
USA, China, South Africa and now Munich - Michelle has come a long way in the world. She is an outdoor person and loves to be in nature with friends and on her mountain bike. Or she meets up with friends for pasta, vino, cappaccino & Co.
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