Volunteers at a animal shelter in one of areas worst-hit by floods in Malaysia staged an eleventh-hour rescue of 120 cats and dogs in lorries as waters rose around its premises.
More than 60,000 people have been displaced and at least 17 killed in floods across eight states in Malaysia, following torrential rainfall that began last Friday (Dec 17).
Rising waters around the Arusza Animal Shelter in Selangor showed up on CCTV cameras installed after animals died in two previous flooding incidents when the shelter was unmanned, volunteer Juanita Izzudin said.
They soon learned that authorities would open floodgates at a nearby dam and quickly rented lorries to move the shelter’s 10 dogs and 100 cats to safety, she said, adding that the cameras had proved vital.
“At least now if there’s heavy rain, we can see movement, we can see the water, we can see everything, because we don’t want the same mistake to happen,” she told Reuters.
The 42-year-old, who also runs a pet transportation service, said they now face the task of providing for the animals having lost a lot of their provisions.
“We have to redo everything. It’s quite challenging, but thank God, we are able to slowly face this heavy test.” Animals caught in floods are often exposed to water-borne bacteria, lung damage, and other health problems, she said.
Since the weekend, social media in Malaysia have been inundated with pleas for help to rescue pets and animals trapped in flooded homes and shelters.
Malaysia’s metereological department on Tuesday warned of more heavy rainfall in the coming days.