Banfield Foundation donates evacuation trailer to Texas A&M Veterinary Emergency Team

The Texas A&M Veterinary Emergency Team has cared for thousands of animals while responding to areas impacted by wildfires, tornadoes, hurricanes, floods and more.
Published: May. 4, 2021 at 12:33 PM CDT|Updated: May. 4, 2021 at 5:28 PM CDT
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX) -The Texas A&M Veterinary Emergency Team received a new 28- foot trailer that will allow them to rescue and evacuate animals impacted by disasters. According to university officials, the new trailer can comfortably transport around 40 small animals, with room to separate injured or nervous animals receiving treatment.

This is the second donation from the Banfield Foundation in recent years. In 2017 the nonprofit donated a medical platform truck that has been used numerous times along the Texas coast.

According to the team at the Texas A&M University Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences program, the custom trailer is the first vehicle designed for animal evacuation. The trailer features 44 kennels, an onboard generator, a 30-gallon freshwater tank, two rooftop air conditioning units, and exterior floodlights. Officials say the trailer can serve during non-emergency situations, such as training scenarios with local agencies.

“This addition really expands our ability to respond. In the past, for the most part, we’ve had to rely on people bringing their animals to us. This is going to allow us to go into the hardest-hit areas and get our hands on those animals faster,” said VET Director Dr. Wesley Bissett. “Time is critical in emergency response, so we’re incredibly grateful to the Banfield Foundation for this vehicle because it’s going to really change the way we’re able to respond.”

Bissett says with severe weather season approaching the new trailer will be useful while trying to evacuate people who have pets.

“If you really think about evacuation behavior in people, very often people won’t leave, they won’t evacuate if their pets aren’t taken care of,” said Bissett. “In a sense, while we’re taking care of the animal issue we’re also taking care of the human issue making sure people evacuate.”

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