If you ever had to evacuate from a disaster event with animals in your care, or you know somebody who experiences that, Dian, a PhD candidate at Flinders University in South Australia, invites you to participate in an important research. The research results will ultimately contribute to providing thoughtful and appropriate services for owners and their animals in times of emergencies.
Read the details to see how you can contribute. If you know somebody who experienced emergency situations with their pets, please ask them to contribute too.
From Dian Fowles (PhD candidate, Flinders University, South Australia):
Australia frequently experiences natural disaster events and often evacuation from an affected area is necessary. These situations are already stressful enough but can be even more so if you have animals in your care at the same time. Many issues can arise, including, for example: what pre-planning can be done; how best to manage the evacuation on the day; will animals be accepted into evacuation shelters; how to cope with finding temporary accommodation that will accept animals; what changes (if any) have occurred in the animal’s behaviour; what impacts have there been on relationships because of evacuating with an animal (e.g. was the family unit forced to break apart during the evacuation in order to manage the animals)?
I am a PhD candidate at Flinders University in South Australia. My study is based on the impacts of disaster events on human-animal relationships. The aim of this project is to learn what issues owners and their animals have had to face, during and after the evacuation, and the associated effects. The hope is that the information gathered will ultimately contribute to the provision of more thoughtful, appropriate services for owners and their animals in times of emergencies.
The time frame of your evacuation is not crucial to this study. You may have left home for a few hours or it may have been much longer than that. It may have been a more recent event or one that occurred some time ago. It is important to me to understand the processes that you went through.
I have experience as a pet loss grief counselor, so am compassionate in my approach and take the human-animal bond very seriously.
I have the Flinders University’s ethics committee approval for this project and can provide the approval number as well as information sheets. You would need to be 18 or over to participate. However, special approval may be obtained if you are aged between 16 and 18.
If you would like to take part in this study you can contact me (Dian) at the following email: “animaldisasterstudy @ flinders.edu.au” (please remove spaces around the @-sign).
I will send you a consent form which would need to be signed and returned to me (either by post or email) before I can interview you (either by phone or email, as you prefer). I will also send you a letter of introduction from my project supervisor. Any involvement in the study would be voluntary, anonymous and confidential.
My sincere thanks to those who choose to participate.