Flood Safety for Large Animals and Humans

Here are some IMPORTANT reminders, and, things you can do if emergency services cannot reach you:

 •In an emergency, the fire service must save human lives first. Do not put yourself or rescuers in further danger!
 •Mud is very dangerous for large animals. Vital functions can be impacted in a short time. Improper extraction methods can cause more damage than the entrapment.
 •Try loosening mud around animal by pumping in water or air. Use caution with electrical cords, diesel fuel, etc. Do NOT PULL ON HEAD!
 •MAKE SURE the animal has a SAFE ZONE to jump or walk into! Give animal opportunity to self-rescue.
 •Assign a "SAFETY PERSON" to keep eyes on everything.
 •In flooded pasture/Ranch areas: greatest danger can be submerged power lines, fences & barbwire.
 •Do not attempt to move animals if you cannot see fence posts!
 •If you are subject to severe flooding, mark fence posts at intervals, using tape or secure flags.
 •Mark gates if possible.
 •Remember: water is a super conductor!
 •Stay SAFE during storms. Evacuate ASAP and move animals when possible.
 •Leave dry food in shelters when possible.
 •Use extreme caution when returning.
 •Watch for floating containers and spreading contaminants, carcasses, hazardous debris, power lines, etc.
 •Call 911 and/or Animal Control for carcass removal assistance. Public health & safety are everyone's first priority! Animal health affects ours, too!

We thank our friends at The Halter Project (www.halterfund.org) for this valuable information

NVADG Helps Support Animal Rescue Efforts During Oroville Dam Evacuation

News Release

Rescue Organization Puts Animals First in Oroville Dam Crisis

CHICO, CA, February 14, 2017 - North Valley Animal Disaster Group (NVADG), a non-profit Animal Rescue Organization based in Chico, California, announced today it has rescued and sheltered over 250 animals in the wake of the possible spillway failure and breach of the Lake Oroville Dam.  More than 180,000 people have been evacuated out of the surrounding areas due to the fear that the water will breach the emergency spillway.  With the quick evacuation mandated by the Butte County Sheriff's Department, many left without their beloved animals.  That's where NVADG stepped in.

Oroville Dam

In the Oroville Dam incident, almost all of the day-one evacuations were requested by owners who were unable to return home to pack up their animals.  In the first 6 hours, over 60 animals were sheltered.  That number increased to 248 in less than 24 hours after the evacuations began.  NVADG phone operators handled over 450 calls for service in that same time period.  Sheltered animals included the usual dogs, cats, and parrots, as well as pigs, cows, goats, lambs and chickens.

"The serious problem with the dam spillway developed so quickly that many residents were unable to evacuate their animals," said Norm Rosene, Vice President of NVADG.  "in an evacuation this large it's very necessary for people to take care of their families first, and sometimes that means that animals are left at home.  That's where we step in and help," he added.

Oroville Dispatch

In this latest disaster, NVADG was dispatched by Butte County along with several other agencies and groups.  They rapidly set up an emergency animal shelter, working with local animal control officers and veterinarians.  NVADG equipment trailers were staged near the Incident Command Post (ICP), and specially trained and outfitted evacuation teams were dispatched from NVADG's 40 foot long command trailer.  White boards inside the trailer were soon covered with team member's names, radio frequencies, and assignments.  A trained NVADG dispatcher kept track of evacuation teams in the field.  Each team of two was given assignments via radio, and traveled by specially marked vehicle to the vacated areas to locate and capture animals at the request of the displaced owners.  Allowed to go behind evacuation and fire lines because of their extensive training, and always in radio contact with local incident command leadership, NVADG evacuation team members worked through the night to accomplish the many assignments given to them.

Oroville Shelter

"We have a full portfolio of rescue options that include a technical rescue team with both rope rescue and swift water certified technicians," added Rosene.  "A separate rescue trailer houses two boats, motors, rope rescue equipment, and both human and animal first aid supplies.  Special large animal slides, which allow the movement of livestock, and the rescue of horses from overturned trailers, are also located in the rescue trailer."

About the North Valley Animal Disaster Group

NVADG is 100% supported by donations from the public. Those wishing to support the work of this all-volunteer group and assist with the Oroville Dam incident are encouraged to make a donation through PayPal. The cost to respond to the Oroville Dam evacuation has used up money we set aside for our summer Wildfire evacuations. Please consider a cash donation to support the cost of our fuel, training, equipment, maintenance and operations. Thank you for helping!

Other Groups

The following is a draft list of some of the Animal Disaster Groups serving California. Regional, Statewide, and National Groups are all listed. Personal and private phone numbers are not listed, therefore it is highly recommended that you contact a group in your area and become familiar with them before an incident.

Read more ...

Who Do I Call When ... ?

There is a myriad of different public and private animal related organizations in our area. Sometimes it is confusing as to which one can help you. We have provided the following list to assist you contacting the appropriate agency:

Read more ...

During Emergency

If this is an emergency, please call our hotline at 530-895-0000.  Emails are not monitored regularly when we are busy working active evacuations.

Contact Info


If this is an emergency, please call our hotline at 530-895-0000.  Emails are not monitored regularly when we are busy working active evacuations.

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Mailing Address

PO Box 441
Chico, CA 95927-0441 USA


(530) 895-0000