Animals in disaster

Helping communities to protect animal lives and local livelihoods in Tamil Nadu


Swift action to protect animals during a disaster can not only prevent animals suffering, but can help protect the livelihoods of the people who depend on them.

Animal protection starts with people. It is essential to prepare animal owners and communities in vulnerable regions with specialised training, so they are ready and able to protect their animals in an emergency.

In July, we carried out a major simulation exercise with residents of the coastal village of Nettukuppam of Thiruvallur district in Tamil Nadu, which remains vulnerable to cyclones, tsunamis, storm surges and flooding.

Our specialist disaster management team, early warning system, helped around 50 livestock owners to rehearse evacuation drills. Exercises included, quickly moving their animals to designated safe areas, and learning simple techniques to help protect their animals and themselves when disaster strikes.

Also participating in the emergency drill, were 130 veterinary students from TANUVAS, who recently learnt animal handling techniques during emergencies, as part of their Veterinary Emergency Response Unit (VERU) training.

During the drill, we spoke to village leader Gunasekaran, who told us: “It is an honour to host this drill on managing animals during disasters. We extend our sincere gratitude to World Animal Protection and NDRF for organising this event in our district.

“Animals are a part of our family and we value their lives. We try to meet all their basic needs during any kind of disaster. This exercise will help us to do this better. After participating in the exercise, I feel I can take better care of my animals if there is a crisis in our area.”

With your support, we are carrying out more evacuation drills across India, to help people be better prepared to protect their animals during emergencies. ,

The emergency drill was organised in partnership with the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (TANUVAS), Chennai.

Read more about how, with your support, we can move fast to protect animals affected by disasters–reducing suffering and helping governments and communities to recover and rebuild.

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