Best Friends’ response to Hurricane Ian
Best Friends Animal Society
Working with our local partners, Best Friends is committed to providing support and safety to the animals impacted by the storm.

The latest

Here's what we're doing to help the pets and people impacted by Hurricane Ian.

Update – October 10: Best Friends continues to assist by moving dogs and cats impacted by the storm. So far, we have directly transported more than 375 animals and have helped coordinate the additional movement of 300 more animals by matching need with our network partners. 

The last of the transport efforts left Friday morning from Jacksonville Humane.

Needs for Florida may be ongoing and will continue to be addressed though existing transport programs. Any needs for additional transport will be supported through network partners who can receive and transport.

Update – October 3: We have been extremely active in Florida, where Best Friends has either directly transported or facilitated the transport of 164 dogs and 197 cats. 

Best Friends’ teams are working to match shelters that have kennel space with the shelters that need immediate evacuations so they can repair damage to their shelters. 

We've also identified some needs in South Carolina, where Ian last landed, and are connecting shelters with resources that we know are available to assist.   

Our specially trained Emergency Response volunteers arrived in Florida on Saturday with vans to pull pets from Escambia County Animal Services and then Jacksonville Humane. Since then, we've either directly transported or facilitated the transport of 164 dogs and 197 cats. 

We’re currently coordinating transports of an additional 100+ animals out of Florida. These transports move animals from the rural shelters to the shelters that can take in more pets, as well as from shelters within Florida to shelters and rescue partners outside of Florida. 

As new requests for transports or other assistance come in, we’re working with shelter partners across the country to help support those needs. And because there are impacted counties that are still under water, we’re working with area groups to make contact with those shelters and to help however we can. 

Update – September 30: We’re continuing to prioritize needs and matching shelters with those close by who can offer immediate assistance, and are working to match those shelters that have kennel space with the shelters that need immediate evacuations so they can repair damage to their shelters.    

We have teams and transports in place to move animals from the rural shelters to the shelters that can take in more pets, as well as from shelters within Florida to shelters and rescue partners outside of Florida. Our initial transports are planned for Sunday and Monday. 

Update – September 29: Hurricane Ian moved across the state and has now downgraded to a tropical storm, but is headed back out into the water where it is projected to become a hurricane again.   

We’re currently prioritizing needs and matching shelters with those close by who can offer immediate assistance, and are working to match those shelters that have kennel space with the shelters that need immediate evacuations so they can repair damage to their shelters.   

Best Friends is also sending in specially trained Emergency Response volunteers. They will arrive in Pensacola on Saturday with vans to pull pets from Escambia County Animal Services and then Jacksonville Humane. 

Once roads are cleared, we'll have teams and transports in place to move animals from the rural shelters to the shelters that can take in more pets, as well as from shelters within Florida to shelters and rescue partners outside of Florida.   

Update – September 28: When we first heard that shelters in Florida could be impacted by this storm, we began reaching out to our Network partner shelters and coordinating with potential receiving partners in order to move pets out ahead of the storm. 

As Hurricane Ian makes landfall, we will continue to monitor the storm, keep everyone informed and do what we can to assist pets in need. 

 What to do if you’ve been impacted

If you’ve been impacted by the disaster, you should follow your city or state guidelines to remain safe. If you are in immediate danger, call 911. 

If you’re evacuating with your pets and you’re not sure what to bring, or if you’re preparing at home and aren’t sure what to do to keep your pets safe, we can help.  

Want to help the shelters impacted by the storm? Here are some ways you can help.

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Keep your pets safe during a natural disaster
When there’s a natural disaster or emergency in your area that requires evacuation, be ready to keep yourself safe, as well as your dogs, cats and other pets. 
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Who we are

Best Friends  Animal Society  works  alongside thousands of animal shelters, rescue groups and other animal  welfare organizations to save the lives of cats and dogs  across the country and to make the entire country no-kill by 2025.

As part of our commitment to keep pets safe, Best Friends’ disaster response team works to save lives during natural disasters and emergencies.

We rescue stranded animals, deliver supplies to hard-hit shelters and rescue groups, transport displaced pets to areas where they’ll be safe, support emergency sheltering efforts and reunite misplaced pets with their families.