Animal welfare group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Asia on Tuesday called on lawmakers and authorities involved in rescue missions during times of calamity to make space for animals instead of abandoning them in dangerous conditions.
Interviewed on Balitanghali, PETA Asia rescue manager Jana Sevilla underscored that animals, whether livestock or pets, rely on humans alone for their safety.
“All lives matter. Hindi porket alagang kambing, alagang baboy, ‘Kakatayin naman, hayaan niyo na.’ Or alagang aso, ‘Marami pang aso diyan.’ Hindi po gano’n,” she said.
Sevilla said they rescued almost 150 animals from Volcano Island, which experienced the brunt of the onslaught of the Taal Volcano eruption last January 12.
PETA Asia was also able to transfer over 100 horses to safer locations.
Sevilla lamented the condition of the animals upon their arrival at Volcano Island.
She said that ash had solidified on the skin of some animals, which made them more prone to sustaining wounds and bacterial infection.
“This is another wake-up call for our lawmakers na bigyan din naman po natin ng provision sa ating mga batas ‘yung mga hayop sa panahon ng kalamidad dahil tayo lang ang inaasahan nila,” she said.
PETA Asia appealed to authorities to make space in rescue vehicles and evacuation centers for animals, noting that many animals were left behind on Volcano Island because authorities refused to take them in.
“Sobrang nakakaawa, nakakalungkot, kasi gustuhin man nila [residents], ando’n pa lang, pagsakay pa lang ng truck, nando’n kaagad ‘yung limitasyon,” she said. — Julia Mari Ornedo/BM, GMA News