Thousands of animals and pets were displaced because of the recent wildfires in California’s Napa and Sonoma County areas. This put a great strain on all the pet rescue and shelter partners in the area. And even though the company’s own Napa and Sonoma stores were closed for a week, Pet Food Express (PFE) lent a helping hand with an effort by its nearby locations.
PFE immediately set up donation SKU at all our stores and began accepting monetary donations as well as directly donating supplies to all its rescue partners in the fire zone in Napa and Sonoma counties (thousands of crates, dog/cat food, kitty litter, bowls, etc). In addition to that, PFE delivered supplies to its stores in the region that were given out to customers based on their needs.
In all, PFE gave away thousands of crates and tens-of-thousands of dollars’ worth of product. PFE raised about $30,000 as well, which will be donated to the company’s pet rescue/shelter partners in the area.
PFE also provided free pet washes at nearly all its stores in the North Bay through October 31 to help people get rid of the soot and smell, which also helped owners meet health concerns.
“Toxins can definitely be concentrated in ash, and the contaminants can be really, really bad, depending on what burned. Even pure forest fire ash is harmful alone, but when houses and cars burn with it, it creates a whole slurry of toxins, from heavy metals, to industrial chemicals, hydrocarbons, pesticides, plastics, etc.,” said John Tegzes, VMD. “Do not feed pets outside if you can help it; if you do feed outside, thoroughly clean all bowls immediately after eating and keep them inside until the next feeding. Do not allow water bowls to sit outside at all. If that cannot be avoided, provide a cover and walls around the bowl to limit deposition of ash, etc.
“Bathing pets at least once a week is also critical since they groom by licking whatever is on their fur,” he continued. “If ash seems particularly bad, it is not a bad idea for a quick bath once a day. Even when the fires are over, the ash persists for a bit, especially when the winds blow harder than usual. Really need some good rains for it to be less of a threat, and that could be a while yet.”
The pygmy goats in the photos survived the fire and were two of the animals who took advantage of the free wash.