Almost 100,000 pets in Ukraine will have received lifesaving aid by end of 2024, thanks to Humane Society International and Ukrainian Red Cross war response

Humane Society International / Europe

Ukrainian Red Cross

BRUSSELS―Animal protection charity Humane Society International and humanitarian agency the Ukrainian Red Cross will reach their goal of having helped 100,000 dogs, cats and other pets and 40,000 pet guardians in war-torn Ukraine by the end of 2024 since their collaboration first began two years ago. The organizations have been working together to provide lifesaving aid such as pet food, veterinary care and supplies for pets and support for their owners internally displaced or otherwise affected by conflict in Ukraine.

So far, the partnership has provided emergency relief in 14 regions across Ukraine, reaching over 19,000 pet guardians and 40,000 pets and delivering over 205 tonnes of pet food. In addition, 48 tonnes of cat litter, 3,530 litter boxes, 2,500 pet carriers and 9,000 packages of flea and tick prevention have been distributed to help dogs and cats in need. To reach their goal, the HSI/URC program will expand its outreach to three more regions, Zakarpattia,  Kharkiv and Sumy, to ensure that aid reaches those in need across Ukraine.

Ruud Tombrock, executive director of Humane Society International/Europe, said: “As the conflict in Ukraine persists, both people and animals are enduring unimaginable hardships side by side. Pets are family, and in such dire circumstances they provide comfort and a sense of normality. We are grateful for the recognition by the Ukrainian Red Cross that the welfare of animals during times of war is intricately linked with the well-being of the people who cherish and depend on them. We are committed to keeping people and pets together.”

In the two years since Russia invaded Ukraine, the war has displaced over 11 million people, including 5 million inside the country, many of whom refuse to evacuate without their pets. To help these people and their animals, the joint efforts of HSI and the URC have provided vital supplies in Kyiv, Khmelnytskyi, Donetsk, Rivne, Zaporizhzhia, Chernihiv, Volyn, Poltava, Zhytomyr, Ternopil, Cherkasy, Chernivtsi, Mykolaiv and Kryvyi Rih. In regions such as Donetsk where congregating in centralized locations poses risks, volunteers from the Red Cross facilitate door-to-door deliveries to ensure the safety of recipients. In select districts, such as the Podil district in Kyiv, additional partnerships enable internally displaced Ukrainians to access complimentary veterinary care.

Maksym Dotsenko, director general of the Ukrainian Red Cross, said: “The Ukrainian Red Cross highly appreciates the support of Humane Society International in providing aid for pets during this difficult time. Being able to stay together with pets is so important for the well-being of our citizens, and this program is helping to make that possible.”

Humane Society International has been helping Ukrainian refugees and their pets since March 2022, providing emergency funding and supplies such as pet food, pet carriers, blankets and veterinary care.

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Media contact: Wendy Higgins:

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