August 30, 2005, TORONTO – Although Hurricane Katrina will have weakened considerably by the time she reaches Canada, she is still expected to dump considerable rain that could cause flooding and possibly disrupt travel. Current predictions have Katrina arriving in southern Ontario as early as Wednesday and moving along the St. Lawrence River through Quebec.


To protect animal companions against Katrina and future storms, The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) is urging people with animals to be prepared.


"Part of being a responsible guardian to animals involves planning for their safety in times of emergency," states Al Hickey, HSC Western Regional Director. "It appears that tornadoes, hurricanes and other severe storms will become more, not less, common," says Hickey. "It is vital for our animal companions' well-being to have effective emergency plans in place."

The current dangers facing animals as Katrina moves into Canada include flooding and possibly wind-related dangers. To protect animals from inclement weather people will want to keep their dogs and cats indoors and provide larger animals with adequate protection as well," says Michael O'Sullivan, HSC Executive Director.

The Humane Society of Canada also wants to warn people that animals shouldn't be allowed to run loose any time, and this is particularly important when heavy rains can cause flooding.

"While flooding can occur anywhere, animals must be kept away from rivers, creeks, streams and other waterways that can quickly turn into raging torrents of water that can sweep animals away," warns O'Sullivan. "If strong winds are also present, animals need to be protected from the elements as well as any objects, such as trees, that could come crashing down on them."

Wild animals who are injured or orphaned and who require human assistance should be taken to a qualified wildlife rehabilitator. If you are not sure if a wild animal needs help or if you need help finding a wildlife rehabilitator in your area contact The Humane Society of Canada at 1-800-641-KIND (5463).

HSC Emergency Items to Have on Hand

HSC First Aid Kit: This inexpensive kit was developed by numerous people experienced in animal care and rescue and is invaluable in emergency situations. It includes a 28-page first aid manual.

HSC Animal Alert Sticker: Created to alert rescue personnel that there are animals inside the house who require assistance and care if their human guardians cannot get home to them.

HSC Special Wallet Card: An important item that contains instructions as to who should be contacted to care for the animals should their human guardian not be able to do so personally.

HSC Disaster Relief Checklist: This card lists items that should be included in your pets' disaster relief kit as well as where the animals will be taken in the event of an emergency.

The Pet Recovery Team: Reunites lost pets with their families through a special network which includes giving each one of your pets an id tag bearing your pet's name and your contact telephone numbers. On the other side of the tag, is a unique serial number keyed to each one of your pets' information, complete with The Humane Society of Canada's toll free number, which works from anywhere in the world.

These items are available by contacting The Humane Society of Canada at 1-800-641-KIND (5463) or through the website at

CONTACT: Michael O'Sullivan by toll free 1-800-641-KIND or Michael on his cell phone (416) 876-9685 or at via twitter at and on Facebook at:

[For more than 17 years, Al Hickey was the Chief Executive of the BC SPCA and before that headed up the Alberta and BC Chambers of Commerce, and was the Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Vancouver. He has been The HSC Western Regional Director for over 12 years. He has 4 children and 6 grandchildren. For his lifetime of achievement dedicated to helping people, animals and the environment, we have bestowed upon him our prestigious Heroes for Animals Award, shared by only a handful of people and organizations.

A father with two children, and a houseful of dogs and cats, Michael O'Sullivan has worked across Canada and in over 110 countries during the last 40 years helping people, animals and nature.]

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works to protect dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits and small animals, livestock, lab animals, wildlife and the environment. We carry out hands on programs to help animals and nature, mount rescue operations, expose cruelty through hard hitting undercover investigations, work to pass laws to protect animals, use a multidisciplinary approach, support animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres, and spread the word about how to help animals and nature through humane education.

The only organization of its kind, seven days a week, The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) works across the street, across Canada and around the world helping people, animals and the environment.

The Humane Society of Canada (HSC) depends entirely on donations to support our programs to help animals and the environment. All donations are gratefully acknowledged with a receipt for income tax purposes. If you would like to support our educational campaigns that protect animals and the environment please make a donation here. Because when it comes to fighting cruelty and violence, we don’t give up. Ever.