Animal rescue groups respond to California wildfires

The wildfires spreading across California have destroyed over 100,000 acres of land in just over a week. As firefighters put their resources into battling the ferocious flames, animal rescue groups have deployed to help the four-legged victims.

So far, hundreds of animals have been displaced by the fires. Many are still in need of shelter, food and medical care. Dedicated to ensuring the safety, welfare and well-being of animals, The American Humane Rescue team is currently helping more than 160 dogs and cats who were forced to evacuate from a Santa Paula animal shelter.

Veterinarian Dr. Lesa Staubus is among the many American Humane volunteers on the scene. “In times of disaster, lives are upended,” she says. “Families can lose track of their beloved pets in the chaos. For those who have lost everything, the importance of helping them reunite with their pets cannot be overstated.”

Dr. Lesa Staubus tends to to a canine wildfire victim. Photo courtesy of Araya Diaz.

This week, American Humane is delivering 3,000 pounds of Chicken Soup for the Soul pet food to the shelter and its animal residents. Thanks to a generous gift from longtime supporter Lois Pope, they’re also matching every donation made during the holiday season to help more animals in need. “We are so thankful for all who do their part to help preserve the human-animal bond in times of crisis,” says Staubus.

Visit to learn more about how you can help the animals affected by the California wildfire animal victims.


Animal Wellness is North America's top natural health and lifestyle magazine for dogs and cats, with a readership of over one million every year. AW features articles by some of the most renowned experts in the pet industry, with topics ranging from diet and health related issues, to articles on training, fitness and emotional well being.