Pictures of cats and dogs being rescued in Orange County after Hurricane Ian

The Orange County Government state on their Facebook page that “Pets are family”. It is the reason behind their committed rescue of cats and dogs from the Hurricane Ian floods. Of course, they are correct, but I would not call them ‘pets’ but that’s a minor point and I am being picky.

The major point is that these great people are rescuing family members, cats and dogs from the devastating flooding caused by Hurricane Ian. The Daily Mail describes them as “heart-breaking photos”.

I wouldn’t describe them like that either ?. The devastation is heart-breaking but the rescue and the love and the care delivered by the rescue people is uplifting rather than heart-breaking for me in any case. Yes, the devastation is horrible, and it will take years for the community to get back to where they were but both people and their companion animals have been saved by these rescue teams.

Like many others I like to see actions and not just words based on the belief that companion animals are family members.

Sadly, as Hurricane Ian slammed through the state of Florida, it decimated property and has sadly killed at least 101 people; quite shocking. More are missing.

I like the way that the ginger tabby was scooped up in a crate which has been repurposed. The cat, a male, looks unimpressed but my experience tells me that domestic cats know when they have been rescued and they are normally thankful. Their normally defensive nature when being handled by a stranger falls away under these extreme circumstances and they become passive and subdued which makes the rescue feasible.

Nearly all the pictures of companion animals rescued by the Orange County rescue teams are of dogs. Is that because the photographers preferred to take photographs of dogs being rescued rather than cats or was it because more dogs needed rescuing than cats?

The most likely and obvious reason is because there were more dogs obviously in need of rescue. This might be because cats go into hiding and perhaps find what they think are safe places and they won’t come out. Their owners have no idea where they are whereas dogs are more likely to be seen struggling through the flood waters and rescued.

That’s just a guess based upon the general knowledge that there is an approximate equal number of cats and dogs in homes in America. I would expect many cats to be hiding in the upper parts of buildings, waiting until the waters recede and their human caregivers return to be reunited.

Nathan Winograd says that the sight of people, cats and dogs being pulled from rising floodwaters is ‘a marked departure from prior disasters, where people were either told to leave their pets behind, or animals had to be rescued by private organizations or individual rescuers. Why the change?’ This time around pets were considered to be family members by the government.

Below are some more pages on cats in emergencies.

Mike Ross and his rescued cat

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Note: sources for news articles are carefully selected but the news is often not independently verified.

Michael Broad

Hi, I'm a 74-year-old retired solicitor (attorney in the US). Before qualifying I worked in many jobs including professional photography. I love nature, cats and all animals. I am concerned about their welfare. If you want to read more click here.

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