After a 7.6 magnitude earthquake ravaged Turkey and Syria this week, countless animals have been left badly injured or still trapped in the debris and rubble. The terrified animals, who have been lucky enough to have escaped with their lives, and like the people they once lived with and loved, have been completely displaced, have been left homeless and hungry.
HAYTAP (Hayvan Haklan Federasyonu), an animal welfare organization that rescues animals from disaster areas, has set up an emergency location in Antakya where pets whose owners have perished in the disaster are currently being cared for and their medical needs being assessed and treated. Countless calls keep coming in from survivors who want help digging out their pets or are looking to be reunited.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared all 10 provinces a state of emergency, however that funding will only be used for people; there has been no funding allocated to the recovery and needs of lost or injured pets. Voluntary contributions continue to be collected, and the arduous tasks continue.
Animal emergency teams have been arriving, and volunteers are doing their best to gather supplies; hoping against hope that some of these suffering pets will not succumb to starvation and hypothermia with the sub freezing temperatures before they can be found and safely rescued.
Two verified photos of a dog pulled from the rubble and that of a cat whose leg had been stuck in concrete are among the survivors. Their families have not yet been found, and the search to reunite lost pets with their families actively continues.
There is still hope as the number of animals rescued from the wreckage and brought to the Field Hospital Tent continues to rise. There are many living beings whose owners have died or gone missing.
Volunteers are doing their best to transport animals to safe areas as soon as possible. The pets who have lost their families will be adopted in the future.
If you are in the region, bring the animals that need help and we provide free support.
WE ARE IN THE DEFNE DOSTLUK TEA GARDEN. (Sümerler, 12. Sk. No:3, 31160 Antakya/Hatay)
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