Shortly after the tornado hit Moore, Okla., Dr. Rod Hall, state veterinarian for Oklahoma, extended an invitation to American Humane Association’s Red Star Animal Emergency Services to officially deploy to the disaster in Moore.

The tornado, reported to be EF-5 strength and two miles wide, touched down in the Oklahoma City area on May 20, killing at least 24 people.

“Our hearts and prayers go out to the people in Oklahoma as they begin recover and rebuild. Just as people are adversely affected by a natural disaster, so are our animals   both those we keep as pets and those on our farms and ranches,” said Animal Agriculture Alliance President and CEO Kay Johnson Smith. “The alliance is encouraging its members to donate to worthy causes, which will be on the ground in Oklahoma helping in this devastating storm’s aftermath.”

The American Humane Association’s Red Star Animal Emergency Services in Oklahoma will include two large big-rig rescue vehicles, which serve as mobile veterinary hospitals and triage centers for animals and also transport crates and medical supplies. The rigs also provide lodging for the association’s staff and first responders.

Other groups that will be instrumental in helping ensure animal care and well-being in the storm’s aftermath include the American Veterinary Medical Foundation and the Oklahoma City Animal Shelter. Both these groups, as well as the American Humane Association, are accepting donations to aid in their relief efforts.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation, certified American Veterinary Medical Association veterinary teams will be standing by to assist in Oklahoma in caring for both large and small animals. The American Veterinary Medical Foundation asks any Oklahoma veterinarians in need of help in order to continue to provide critical health and sheltering care, to contact them.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of this disaster, their families and those on the ground helping to assist with the ongoing clean-up efforts. We hope our membership and others will be generous in donating to those organizations caring for both humans and animals in Oklahoma,” Johnson Smith said.