The PETS (Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards) Act was passed by Congress in 2006 to mandate that governments allow for the needs of households with pets. In 2006, the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services created the first CAMET – Companion Animal Mobile Equipment Trailer – that could be used to set up an emergency companion animal shelter. There are now 24 CAMETs in North Carolina. In addition to being used in co-sheltering situations (where people and pets are both sheltered at the same location), the CAMETs have been used in local animal welfare situations when large numbers of animals have been removed from a home or shelter.
With funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, our Emergency Programs Division held two training sessions this year to familiarize organizations with the trailers. The training covered the logistics of using a CAMET, the staffing requirements to run an emergency shelter, legal issues surrounding housing animals, and hands-on demonstrations of what is in a CAMET. Animal control officers, veterinarians, emergency technicians, government workers, animal rescue groups and more were at the training session held April 21 in Asheville.
In the video below, Dr. Mandy Tolson, eastern region Emergency Programs veterinarian, explains more about the training.