Animal rescues overwhelmed after remnants of tropical storm Olga ravaged rural communities

Posted at 4:23 PM, Nov 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-04 21:43:29-05

HARDIN COUNTY, Tenn. (WTVF) — Animal rescues are overwhelmed after the remnants of tropical storm Olga ravaged multiple rural counties.

Homes across the area were damaged, or destroyed, and hundreds of people remain without power.

Jennifer Penick said, "Karen, my rescue partner that has half the dogs, she still has no power, and she lost water for the first week and a half because her trees on the front side of the road ripped up her water line."

The Hardin Animal Relocation and Transition Team has been taking care of animals that were surrendered following the storm, including a litter of 8 puppies.

"From what I understand they were living in a mobile home, and the mobile home had a tree fall on it, and it’s unlivable," Jennifer Penick said.

Penick said their displaced owner moved in with a relative, and the neighbors didn’t like having puppies next door, so the owner surrendered them to the rescue.

"They were really concerned that the neighbors would shoot them because that’s what they said they would do," Penick said.

Folks in surrounding low income rural communities are still struggling, and many of them have been forced to give up their beloved pets. "They’re just trying to survive and take care of themselves," Penick said.

Eventually the puppies will head to a humane society in Michigan where they’ll be adopted. "We sent 40 animals to them on Wednesday," Penick said.

As the community recovers, Penick is making sure man’s best friend is not forgotten. Right now there’s 96 animals in their care. If you would like to donate to the Hardin Animal Relocation and Transition Team to help with costs at this time you can do that here.