Team from KC metro goes to Florida to help rescue animals

Published: Oct. 5, 2022 at 5:58 PM CDT
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - Many people around the country are offering a helping hand with Hurricane Ian recovery efforts in Florida, including those from the Kansas City metro.

“This far exceeds the damage that we worked in Irma,” said Eric Thompson, Executive Director of Code 3 Associates Technical Animal Rescue Team.

Thompson drove from Kansas City to DeSoto County, Florida, last week to take on the difficult task of trying to rescue animals of all types from the record flooding Hurricane Ian left behind.

“We are bright colors and big puffy rescuers in a very stressful scary situation for those animals, already, and they don’t understand we are there to help,” Thompson explained.

Working alongside Thompson are even more people from the metro.

Animal Search and Rescue Training and Response, which is based out of the Kansas City metro, sent a small group of animal specialists to assist.

“It may be anything from horses to cattle stranded in floodwaters, to checking the welfare of people that are staying behind with cats and dogs that may be evacuated later on, if their resources come out,” Thompson said.

Thompson said that, thus far, they’ve helped hundreds of animals and the number continues to grow.

He said the rescues have been very tough. However, the local team is just honored to help Floridians while representing the KC metro.

“When they hear that we take the time out of our regular job to come down here and help them with their pets, the gratitude is very humbling for us in the field,” Thompson said.

Thompson also said their group gets called to handle the surge response and will leave when the water begins to recede. That might be in the next few days.