Cascade Fire Intake Center
By FieldHaven Feline Center
FieldHaven’s supportive role in the Cascade Fire
When the Cascade Fire broke out north of Lincoln, residents didn’t have hours: they only had minutes to escape before the wildfire burned their homes. First responders raced against the flames to help people and their animals evacuate safely. Horses, goats, cats, bunnies, dogs, and chickens were among the thousands of evacuees. The Yuba Sutter Fairgrounds became the evacuation center for those who didn’t have family or friends to retreat to.
The Yuba County Office of Emergency Services called FieldHaven Feline Center to establish an intake area for cats. We had a temporary shelter up and running just four hours after receiving the first phone call. In a very short time, we were preparing for incoming animals. With few supplies, equipment, or food on hand to set up a shelter, we put the word out for help…and help came! No sooner were fire victims and evacuees bringing their pets to us, the public came in with food, litter, bedding, office supplies, and cages. Evacuees were comforted knowing their pets were safe and cared for close by.
Over the next six days, pets were cared for by our compassionate team of staff and volunteers until the fires subsided, allowing them to return home. Unfortunately, there were some with no home to return to.
Such was the case for the Santanna family, who were vacationing in Disneyland. Although the pet sitter was able to flee the burning home with their two dogs, he was unable to find their two cats. One of the cats was found and rushed to a veterinarian to treat his burns. However, “Lady” the other cat was still missing.
Animal Services found a kitty with burned paws and brought her to our evacuation shelter. She didn’t have a microchip and needed time to heal from her injuries so she recovered at FieldHaven. We posted her picture on Facebook and Lady was reunited with her family! Little Ivey Santanna hugged Lady as we all watched with misty eyes. Lady went home, healthy, spayed and (most importantly) microchipped!
Another tiny evacuee brought to the evacuation shelter was an orphaned kitten we named “Cascade.” Sadly, his burned paws were the least of this four-week-old kitten’s problems. He had panleukopenia (AKA kitty parvo), which is an often-fatal condition. Our staff and volunteers never gave up on this tiny refugee, closely following our treatment protocol. Cascade, now ten weeks old, was cleared and has been adopted!
FieldHaven is honored to have been able to bring comfort and support to the furry family members of fire evacuees.