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Public Meeting ‘No Animals Left Behind’, Sat. June 9

June 8, 2018, 5:47 PM HST
* Updated June 8, 5:48 PM
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Photo courtesy of Barbara Pritchard with FEMA. Robert Kaufmann/FEMA

Even with the best upfront planning, the unpredictability of the Kīlauea Volcano eruption and lava flow has left affected residents with difficult decisions on what to take when they evacuate and what to leave behind. Sometimes, animals and pets get left behind.

Hawai‘i Island Humane Society (HIHS) has been working with State, County and Federal officials since the eruption began in early May and has witnessed firsthand the impacts to the people, families and pets affected by the lava flow.

HIHS staff has been on the ground seven days a week throughout the eruption and going door-to-door in search of animals and pets. In addition, State, County and Federal officials notify HIHS of pet and animal sightings and HIHS is also in communication with helicopter pilots who can spot things from the air that may be difficult to see at the ground level.

Given the devastating effects of the ongoing eruption on the lower Puna community, Hawai‘i Island Humane Society reached out to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) to support HIHS efforts in providing an independent assessment of the areas affected by the eruption, communication from local disaster officials and collaborative efforts moving forward. ASPCA was receptive and a two-person team headed up by ASPCA Senior Director for Disaster Response Dr. Dick Green and Joel Lopez arrived on island yesterday.

Dr. Green suggested that a public meeting be called for tomorrow, Saturday, June 9 at 11 a.m. at the Panaewa Zoo Main Pavilion to discuss collaborative plans and initiatives moving forward throughout the eruption. The expected outcome of the meeting is collaboration among all parties including residents, rescue organizations and government entities so No Animals Are Left Behind.

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Planning for the public meeting came together quickly today and HIHS asks for everyone’s help in getting the word out to members of the public that are interested in attending.

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For up-to-minute information follow HIHS on social media on Facebook @HIHSoc and Twitter @HIHumaneSoc.

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