china and south korea
In May 2008, a 7.9-magnitude earthquake hit north of Chengdu, China, killing more than 40,000 people, injuring hundreds of thousands and leaving millions homeless.
In response, Humane Society International offered aid in the form of two grants to help animals and those working with them in the affected area. One went to the US China Environmental Foundation, with which we've partnered in the past, to support the famous Wolong Panda Research Institute' located just 20 miles from the quake' s epicenter. The other grant went to the Chinese Embassy in Washington as a gesture of HSI' s concern and goodwill during this difficult time. HSI is also offering the government assistance in humanely managing dog populations in the affected area.
The media reports at that time reported the impact on animal companions, which were relayed to HSI by local consultant Peter Li: ' Both people and their animal companions are victims of this terrible disaster. A dog refused to leave his 73-year old owner who was buried for four days until her rescue,' he said. ' Two small dogs were rescued from under a pile of rubble by a rescue team sent from Taiwan. A Chengdu rescue operation has rescued 20 dogs and three cats from one disaster area. We have seen many reports of families seeking safety with their pets.'