Pennsylvania group gives helping 'paw' to displaced pets

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - When a house fire breaks out in the Philadelphia area, the Red Cross springs into action to offer the family a helping hand and a place to stay.

But what about the victims' pets? That's where Red Paw comes in.

The emergency relief service has paired with the local Red Cross to care for animals displaced by flames, flood or other residential disaster. The goal is to eventually reunite them with their owners.

Red Paw uses a network of volunteers, foster homes and other animal welfare groups to care for pets whose owners are struggling to rebuild their lives.

Red Paw founder Jen Leary says the all-volunteer agency responded to 164 disasters last year. The organization helped nearly 300 animals, including dogs, cats, birds, turtles, ferrets and a snake.

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