Prison Swapped Inmates For Animals As Irma Loomed

by | 09.12.2017 | 7:47am
Monroe County Sheriff's Department posted a picture of Mo the sloth as he prepares to weather the storm at the prison.

As hurricane Irma made its way toward the coast of Miami, the Monroe County Sherriff's Office sent 426 inmates to Palm Beach County in order to house 250 animals in order to protect them from the storm.

The animals, which included horses, sheep, alpacas, alligators, a sloth, and an emu, were relocated from a sanctuary for abandoned, donated confiscated and injured animals.

The story was one of many that played out across the state of Florida as Irma approached. Five dolphins were relocated from their pool in the Florida Keys to a temporary enclosure in Central Florida and the humane society in Tampa Bay was looking for temporary foster care for more than 100 dogs.

Other facilities that house larger exotic animals, such as zoos, sanctuaries and theme parks, opted to keep animals on their premises, keeping some of them in buildings designed to withstand hurricane-force winds and flooding while others were left in their normal habitats to prevent them from becoming too agitated and give them the optimum chance for survival.

Read more at Palm Beach Post.

  • Judy Gaddis

    Great news! I hope the Sherriffs’ of other Florida and surrounding state counties also came up with plans such as these. I watched much of The Weather Channel’s coverage of Irma and it seemed as though many animals were rescued by fireman, police officers and private citizens, even when putting themselves in extreme danger which shows that there ARE still really good people around. UNLIKE the story I heard and saw of a puppy being rescued from a CAGE in a house whose occupants had evacuated. IN A CAGE! Cannot write here what I think of those people and others like them……………….Grrrrrrrr!

    • Minneola

      The Weather Channel did a remarkable job of covering this unbelievable hurricane. Imagine, as well, that their ratings might have topped (or come close to) the other major networks. I’m glad that some animal rescues, much earlier, had emptied their facilities of other dogs and cats (by transporting them to other locations outside the hurricane area) and, thus, making room for those pets that they anticipated would be filling up their facilities as these newcomers were found lost during the storm.

  • Yes Master

    The Monroe County Sheriff’s in the Keys has long had a petting zoo of all animals abandoned or neglected for not only Key Westers but everyone. But the zoo is on the ground floor, under the jail so to speak, and for Irma potentially ground zero. They moved the animals, up, into the Stock Island jail which has significant protection from Hurricanes. I have been there to drop off supplies for the horse there, when I lived in the Keys.

  • Blue Larkspur

    How about letting the dolphins just swim in the ocean where they belong?

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