Several dogs were found tied up and left to fend for themselves as floodwaters caused by tropical storm Harvey rose around them. Heartbreaking photos of the abandoned dogs are emerging on social media despite advanced warnings from authorities and efforts by humane societies to save them.
Although many families were able to evacuate with their dogs, numerous other dogs were left stranded as the hurricane hit, some heartbreakingly chained up and unable to escape. With the heavy rains continuing and waters still rising, chaining dogs to poles or trees is as good as a death sentence.
Thankfully, many of the bystanders who saw the dogs, have saved them.
These two dogs were chained up on properties, but photographer Ruaridh Connellan untied them and took them to safety.
Not all of the dogs were found chained, some were simply left behind. Fortunately for this dog, a kind neighbor took him in.
My neighbor left their dog out in the back yard and evacuated… so lord knows I took him and brought him into my house 😭💜 pic.twitter.com/pMObSmMNto
— Cøurtney∞ (@weiszass8) August 25, 2017
One reporter covering the hurricane snapped this photo. At least their family had the good sense to put the two dogs in a boat.
“Sadly a family had to evacuate their flooded neighborhood in Dickinson, #Texas without their dogs,” the reporter wrote. “Hope they’re ok. #houston” He later added, “I should add, I think the people have every intention of coming back to get the dogs,” he wrote. “Food was left behind and I suspect it had to be a tough choice and that they will come back for them as soon as they can.”
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UPDATE: Frankie & Bear are safe. The two dogs we saw sitting in a boat in a flooded neighborhood have been rescued! A combination of volunteer rescuers and friends pitched in to save the day. In the chaotic evacuation, the family was not allowed to bring the dogs in the rescue boat so they thought putting them in the boat temporarily, until someone could reach them, was the safest decision. They're being cared for and the owners will reconnect them at some point. Photo courtesy @agband93bcobrooks
The two dogs were later picked up by “a combination of volunteer rescuers and friends pitched in to save the day. In the chaotic evacuation, the family was not allowed to bring the dogs in the rescue boat so they thought putting them in the boat temporarily, until someone could reach them, was the safest decision.” They’re being cared for and the owners will reconnect them at some point.
Other dogs have been found trying to find dry ground or something to hang on to, like this dog did to a guard rail. Fortunately for him, he was luckily rescued by 4 Paws Farm, who are in Texas and working tirelessly to help save stray and abandoned dogs.
Not every dog has been so lucky. One person shared this sad photo of a dog killed by the other dangers of flooding – downed electrical wires. “Neighbors evacuated yesterday. They left their fur baby behind. He was electrocuted at 5:30 a.m. He was a beautiful German Shepherd.”
Ahead of the storm, law enforcement agencies urged dog owners to unchain their pets. The Roman Forest Police Department issued a stern warning on Facebook, after witnessing some dogs left chained outside homes. They explained that their chief had witnessed a chained dog drown during a past flood, writing, “The dog barked and barked as the water kept rising until the water got high enough and the barks stopped.”
“Please do not keep your family members tied to a rope or chain. It is against the law to keep a dog on a chain during extreme weather conditions,” they wrote.
“I promise you, that I will hold anyone accountable that unlawfully restrains they’re dog in extreme weather conditions,” Chief Carlisle added. “Dogs are your family members too.”
“Last year” as Chief Carlisle was checking the level of water on FM1485, TxDOT crews were shutting down the San Jacinto…
In the aftermath of 2005’s Hurricane Katrina, some 250,000 animals died or were displaced. If you are looking for ways to help stray animals stranded by Hurricane Harvey, contact a Texas animal shelter or rescue organization and see how you can help. Many are looking for temporary foster caregivers, food supplies and funds.