Douglas County Animal Response Team (DCART)
Tornadoes, floods, neglect, abandonment, dog fighting and other forms of cruelty — these natural or manmade disasters have tragic effects on animals in our city, county, state, and nation. Dedicated to the preparation, coordination and response to animals in need during a crisis, DCART is an effort to better serve the needs of these victimized animals in Douglas County.
Summer 2011 Update:
The Lawrence Humane Society's Board of Directors is working with the Executive Director, shelter staff and local officials to evaluate current DCART needs and resources in an effort to continue providing crisis and emergency response services for animals in our area. Future meeting dates will be announced when available.
What is DCART?
The Douglas County Animal Response Team (DCART), operated by the Lawrence Humane Society, is a group of individuals and organizations dedicated to the preparation, coordination and response to animals in need during a crisis. Tornadoes, floods, neglect, abandonment, dog fighting and other forms of cruelty — these natural or manmade disasters have tragic effects on animals in our city, county, state, and nation. The formation of DCART is an effort to better serve the needs of these victimized animals in Douglas County.
Meeting a Critical Need
The devastating Greensburg, Kan., tornado left in its wake a tragic scene of lost and injured animals in desperate need of help. This prompted an effort to help Douglas County facilitate safe, environmentally sound, and efficient response to animal emergencies on the local level. Thus, DCART came together and in 2009 held its first organized activities.
The Lawrence Humane Society, through its DCART affiliations, is partnering with private industry, nongovernmental organizations, citizen volunteers, and county emergency management to create a framework in which prevention, protection, preparedness, response and recovery efforts can occur in a coordinated manner throughout Douglas County when animals fall victim to disaster.
DCART utilizes the principles of the Incident Command System (ICS), which has been recognized by the Department of Homeland Security as the most effective system for managing emergencies. This system has been universally adopted as a part of the National Emergency Response System. DCART also follows requirements set forth by the Kansas State Animal Response Team.
DCART procedures and training are implemented with the National Incident Management System (NIMS), and DCART team members are required to complete specific training requirements as part of the NIMS Training Plan (ICS 100, ICS 200 and ICS 700). DCART participants also receive education and practice with techniques and procedures such as animal handling and cleaning protocols developed by the Humane Society of the United States and other national and regional organizations.