Remembering the cats and dogs who died in the Red Zone after 9/11

Yesterday I watched two children read out the names of people who had perished on September 11, 2001 in and around the Twin Towers. The girl had lost her father and the boy his uncle in the terrorist attack. It was very moving. It happens every year. The emotional impact does not wane. The memorial on the site of the twin towers is hugely impressive, beautifully designed and it adds to the poignancy of the moment.

I would also like to remember the cats, dogs (indeed all the animals) who died in what was called the Red Zone. I had no idea. The Red Zone was the cordoned off area around what remained of the twin towers. In that area very many cats and dogs and other pets were trapped inside apartments. They waited in vain for their guardians to return home.

PETA received a large number of calls from people who were desperate to reach their beloved companion animals inside the Red Zone. They had been barred from returning to their homes.

PETA dispatched a team to New York. It was led by their Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. She arrived with a team from Norfolk Virginia. Apparently the scene was chaotic and heartbreaking. There were roadblocks and barriers everywhere. They tried to reach the animals who needed their assistance. Their guardians were desperate to retrieve them.

They succeeded in getting some firefighters and superintendents to bring some of the animals out. But, and I was surprised to read this, Daphna said that most of the animals perished. I’m not completely sure what that means. Does it mean that they had perished because they’ve been killed by falling rubble and debris which had destroyed the apartments or does it mean that they starved to death in the apartments? I think it means the latter because nobody was able to get to these apartments for quite a long time afterwards.

The PETA team were able to care for traumatised animals at a rescue centre that they had set up and where they managed to reunite some pet owners with their companion animals but, and this is a big but, a lot of these companion animals died. Let’s remember them.

P.S. We also remember the sniffer dogs who died prematurely.

The Cats of 9/11

Source: Opposing Views

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