Around 50 animals from the Quesnel SPCA branch and 60 from the Williams Lake branch have been relocated to other shelters as a precaution due to evacuation alerts in the region.
Friday Aug. 10 saw the animals moved to branches in the Lower Mainland as well as the Okanagan.
Jenn Coghill, an animal care attendant at the Quesnel SPCA branch, says the branch had mainly kittens, a few adult cats and some dogs. A litter of kittens was taken to an SPCA in Penticton, while the remainder were relocated to branches in the Lower Mainland. Williams Lake also relocated kittens, adult cats and one dog.
Coghill says the animals will remain in the Lower Mainland now, to be adopted out to residents in that area.
“There’s no panic, it’s just in case something happens. We had more than 50 animals, so its better to get them out before any highways close,” she comments.
While the Quesnel SPCA branch is not on evacuation alert, the whole of West Quesnel is on alert, along with many outlying communities in the Quesnel region. The City of Williams Lake does not have an evacuation alert in effect, however, there are wildfires in the region.
“Evacuations are a stressful time for everyone. This most certainly includes the animals we love and care for – they are no doubt feeling it,” says Mark Takhar, BC SPCA’s chief operations officer.
“As there are a number of other areas are under evacuation alert, we continue our preparations, as many expect to see warm, dry weather over the next while. Although we’re hoping we don’t see a repeat of last summer’s devastating wildfires, our staff, volunteers and officers are ready, willing and able to feed and comfort any animals in need of our help.”
In 2017, the BC SPCA set up an emergency shelter in Prince George. The SPCA’s special constables also spend nearly 2,000 hours assisting animals behind evacuation lines, according to the SPCA’s press release.