Fairground­s has housed as many as 67

Marysville Appeal-Democrat - - Front Page - By Lynzie Lowe llowe@ap­pealdemo­crat.com

It’s not just the peo­ple who need care and sup­port. Yuba-sut­ter Do­mes­tic An­i­mal Disas­ter As­sis­tance has been op­er­at­ing an emer­gency dog shel­ter at the YubaSut­ter Fairground­s since Sept. 8 to care for the many pets that have been af­fected by evac­u­a­tions due to the North Com­plex Fire.

“Some­one is here 24/7,” said Gretchen Cupp, pres­i­dent of the group.

Cupp said this is the long­est run­ning emer­gency shel­ter her team has fa­cil­i­tated to date, sur­pass­ing even the one es­tab­lished af­ter the Camp Fire broke out in Nov. 2018.

“That one had the big­gest num­ber of an­i­mals housed, but this will be the long­est open,” said Cupp.

On Wed­nes­day the pop-up shel­ter was hous­ing 15 dogs. Cupp said there have been as many as 67 dogs housed at the shel­ter dur­ing the past few weeks and num­bers ebb and flow as evac­u­a­tion or­ders are lifted or ex­panded.

Ac­cord­ing to Cupp, most of the dogs that have been housed at the fa­cil­ity were brought in by their own­ers for tem­po­rary hous­ing, which is a good thing be­cause in pre­vi­ous wild­fire emer­gen­cies many dogs were brought in af­ter be­ing found run­ning

the streets.

“When they are brought in like that we have no idea who they be­long to,” said Cupp. “And if dogs are not claimed when we have to close the shel­ter they go to an­i­mal con­trol in the county they were found.”

Cupp said the fa­cil­ity is manned en­tirely by vol­un­teers and op­er­ates through funds from FEMA in ad­di­tion to com­munity do­na­tions used to take care of things not cov­ered by the emer­gency as­sis­tance.

“The com­munity has been in­cred­i­bly gen­er­ous,” said Cupp. “We have had tons of food, toys, leashes and other sup­plies do­nated.”

They have also re­ceived gen­er­ous do­na­tions from the Petco Foun­da­tion, said Cupp.

Al­though Cupp said the fa­cil­ity pro­vided for the shel­ter at the Yuba-sut­ter Fairground­s is the per­fect set up to care for th­ese an­i­mals, she would much rather see the pets with their loved ones.

“We love to care for th­ese an­i­mals and it is so re­ward­ing for us, but they are hap­pi­est with their fam­i­lies.”

Cupp said it is cru­cial for pet own­ers to have an evac­u­a­tion plan ready not only for them­selves, but for their pets as well, to ease stress dur­ing emer­gency sit­u­a­tions.

“It is one less thing to fuss over,” said Cupp.

Ide­ally, Cupp said the best plan would be to find some­where the whole fam­ily, in­clud­ing any four-legged friends, could go to­gether dur­ing an evac­u­a­tion or other emer­gency sit­u­a­tion.

Due to the COVID-19 pan­demic, Cupp said vis­its to the pets housed at the fa­cil­ity is lim­ited and all vol­un­teers must wear a mask and thor­oughly wash af­ter com­ing into con­tact with the an­i­mals.

Those in­ter­ested in vol­un­teer­ing at the shel­ter are wel­come to stop by the shel­ter lo­cated in the Expo Hall at the Yuba-sut­ter Fairground­s be­tween the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Mone­tary do­na­tions are also ap­pre­ci­ated at this time and can be made at http:// ys­dada.org.

For more in­for­ma­tion about Yuba-sut­ter Do­mes­tic An­i­mal

Disas­ter As­sis­tance, visit www.ys­dada.org.

Vol­un­teer Stephanie Hors­fall pets An­gel dur­ing a walk on Wed­nes­day at the emer­gency pet shel­ter run by Yuba-sut­ter Do­mes­tic An­i­mal As­sis­tance at the Yuba Sut­ter Fairground­s.

Ap­peal-demo­crat

An­gel, a dog cur­rently housed at the emer­gency pet shel­ter run by Yuba-sut­ter Do­mes­tic An­i­mal As­sis­tance due to evac­u­a­tions in Yuba County, takes a walk with vol­un­teer Stephanie Hors­fall at the Yuba-sut­ter Fairground­s on Wed­nes­day.

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