In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, many dogs had been abandoned by their owners in areas affected by serious flooding. When the hurricane came, Betty Walter was working with several animal rescue groups. She had her four dogs and was caring for eleven other dogs from the rescue groups, as well as pet sitting for a friend.
Betty said, “One small dog came to my window earlier Saturday morning. Two are homeless people’s dogs that live around there. They asked me for help. Two are neighbors dogs that belong to people.”
In total she had 21 dogs in her care this week, and has been reaching out for help for them as well as other animals left in her community.
“I don’t think I will ever forget those cries for help from dogs in my neighborhood. A lot [of] people kept their dogs outside. I tried so hard to go rescue a couple. The water was too high. They cried for hours…I stayed [in my home] until I got help.”
As the flood waters kept rising, she found herself stuck in her attic with all of the dogs.
Rescuers made their first round through on Saturday but were only taking people, so Betty waited for help until Sunday.
After 14 hours in her attic above the flood waters, help came in the form of two men who had a boat and insisted on helping Betty and all of her dogs.
They were able to fit Betty and all of the 21 dogs in the boat and brought them to safety.
“To these amazing guys that help me and some of my neighbors dogs that I rescued. I was worried there was too many dogs on the boat and it would tipped over. I told them I would stay behind and for them to make 2 trips. They said NO we are taking all and you. We had 21 dogs on this boat. No place for any humans on this boat. We had to walk in water over my head to get out.” Betty said.
Rescuers cannot always help to rescue pets early on during natural disasters, so Betty urges people to have a plan and know what to do with your pets during such a situation;
“Have a plan together for your pets. Some first responders will not pick up big dogs. I was lucky these guys came by helping people with dogs.”
Betty’s compassionate and courageous heart helped save the lives of many of our furry friends, and their owners are surely grateful for all of her effort, as well as to the men from Deer Park who were kind enough to rescue her with all 21 of her dogs.
You are Loved.
Photos courtesy of Betty Walter