BUTTE COUNTY — The four shelters that have been set up in Butte County for Camp Fire pets will have to be phased out, so there’s a need for foster families.
But volunteers also want to see happy reunions between pets and their owners.
“You know, it’s sad because you never think in a million years that it would ever happen to you,” said Annelise Huppert.
Huppert lost her home in the Camp Fire but was able to escape with her family and most of her animals.
“And the dogs were the first ones to load up, and then the pig and then the turtle,” she said.
While they’ve been staying with friends, the Hupperts took their pets to the animal disaster shelter in Oroville.
“This place is amazing,” Huppert said. “They took care of all of my animals. They gave them a whole bunch of love and vet care and just were there for them emotionally.”
Many of the 1,300 animals at Butte County’s emergency shelters have not been claimed.
“About half the animals that we have here, we’re not sure who the owners are,” said Joe Hinkle. “We want people to be able to find their animals and we’re going to help them in any way we can.”
Shelter Director Joe Hinkle is with the ASPCA, working with the Butte County to run the shelter in Oroville.
Butte County has put photographs of all the sheltered Camp Fire animals online.
“We’re doing the best we can to take care of them and to give them the love and the care that they deserve,” Hinkle said. “But if we can get people in here and help reunite them and get them out of here, it’s going to be better in the long run for everybody.”
Hinkle told FOX40 over the last three days the shelter has started turning a corner and more animals have been going out than coming in.
“So it feels like we’ve gotten to a point where people are getting to a place where they can come back and pick up their animals or being able to come in and find their lost animals,” he said.
Foster families are also stepping up.
“It’s mind-blowing to see all the care and love care that everyone’s getting that were affected by this fire,” Huppert said.
Locations of all four shelters can be found below:
• Oroville: Small Animal Shelter – Old County Hospital, 22279 Del Oro and Mono
• Chico: Small Animal Shelter – Chico Municipal Airport, 150 Airpark Blvd.
• Richvale: Small Animal Shelter – Humane Society of the United States, 1210 Richvale Highway
• Gridley: Large Animal Shelter – Butte County Fairgrounds, 199 E Hazel St.
You can see a list of rescued and unclaimed animals by clicking here. Click here if you need someone to help you foster your pets. Additional information can be found at the Butte County Recovers website.