Charitable contributions in support of a equine veterinary body’s Equine Disaster Relief Fund are being accepted to help horses following Hurricane Florence in the Carolinas in the US.
Just as was done in 2017 during hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) Foundation will work with agencies and veterinarians in the region to identify the needs of the equine community. Supplies are not being accepted until specific needs are identified.
Many horses have been relocated inland, putting a heavy strain on facilities and caregivers, while other horses may become stranded in flooded eastern flatlands. The predicted flood waters will make extended care for displaced animals an ongoing need.
“Once we receive an assessment of need and distribution protocols from the agencies and veterinary members in the area, the Foundation will work to meet their needs,” said AAEP’s director of industry relations Keith Kleine.
“While we know people like to donate supplies, monetary support to a trusted charitable organization is always the best response everyone can provide immediately.”
Should Hurricane Florence’s impact be less than anticipated, any unused contributions will be maintained in the Disaster Relief Fund for use in future disasters.
It has been reported that three of herds of wild horses in North Carolina’s Outer Banks have weathered the hurricane unharmed, while the 118-horse strong Shackleford Banks herd is as yet unaccounted for as their uninhabited barrier island home is still inaccessible.
The Corolla, Rachel Carson Reserve and Cedar Island herds are reportedly getting back to normal.
Developed in 2005 during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the AAEP Foundation Equine Disaster Relief Fund was formed to help ensure the safety and care of horses affected by natural disasters.
Since its inception, more than $500,000 has been donated through supplies, shipping, and monetary support to aid horses of all breeds in disaster-related situations. Disaster preparedness training and education for horse owners, veterinarians and first responders also receive fund support. All money donated is used to benefit horses in need.