(Update: Adding video, comments from PET representatives)
BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The Pet Evacuation Team held a volunteer training session in Bend on Sunday. The nonprofit also known as PET shows up to help with people's animals when disasters occur in Central Oregon, such as wildfires.
Regional Coordinator Vikki Sheerer said, "If you are evacuated from your neighborhood, you may not realize that you can't go back into your neighborhood to retrieve your pets. So that's something that we help out with, with the cooperation of emergency services. We also help out with Red Cross situations."
The organization held their new volunteer training, which happens twice a year.
At the training, there were 10 new people, but the organization has nearly 100 volunteers in total. They training covered topics such as triage and first aid, and the safety of volunteers, which means they never respond alone, and making sure to wear closed-toed shoes, long pants and gloves.
They also learned that when approaching animals, they need to approach them slowly and talk softly, not making rapid movements. They also learned how to safely handle horses, such as to not get too close to their head or their feet.
Board member Duane Stubenrauch said, "I think the presentation on safety was probably one of the key takeaways, that you're never going out by yourself. You're always depending on someone next to you to help you out. You shouldn't be afraid to ask for help or to offer help."
PET is run entirely by volunteers and new volunteers are always needed and welcome.