The flooding that has taken place as a result of Hurricane Matthew is not entirely over for everyone in South Carolina. Days after the storm ended, and with bluebird skies welcoming nice weather and pretty fall days, some areas of the state had just begun to flood, thanks to runoff from the swollen rivers to their north.

The SCDNR worked throughout the storm and during the flooding, boating through areas that they normally drive their trucks through. Searching for survivors in the flooded areas was their main goal, and while most people got out before the flooding got too high for them, the same wasn’t true for a lot of pets and farm animals.

And when DNR officers encountered these animals, they didn’t just toss a bag of treats to the pets and move on. They took the animals in, and this included much more than just dogs and cats. Goats, pigs, chickens – when they happened across any of these animals, they loaded their boats with them, took them to high ground, fed them, got any medical needs met for them, and made sure they were safe. 

In cases where the officers could find the owners or neighbors, the animals were placed appropriately. In other cases, they were taken to the most local animal shelter in the area. If you or a loved one has returned home to find your pets or farm animals missing, call your local animal shelters. And if you’d like to take in one of these displaced animals to foster or possibly adopt, you should call the shelters as well. 

It wasn’t just domestic animals that the officers helped. In a few instances, whitetail deer stood on tiny pieces of high ground, nervously allowing the patient officers to make friends long enough to scoop them up for a boat ride to solid ground, where the animals were deposited on firm footing and freedom. 

Kudos to our game wardens and other DNR personnel who, in doing their jobs to keep their fellow South Carolinians safe, did not hesitate to go above and beyond to rescue these animals, many of whom would have surely perished without their help.