An animal rescue group in St. Louis, Missouri, is reeling after multiple puppies drowned in a flash flood at its shelter Tuesday brought on by record-breaking rainfall hitting the city.
“Fly high little ones,” wrote Stray Paws Rescue in a Facebook post, followed by a rainbow emoji. “Our hearts are breaking.”
Ten puppies died in all, a spokesperson told HuffPost in an email. The organization’s adult dogs and all of its cats survived the flooding and are safe.
Earlier in the day, the nonprofit had shared images showing the rising water around the dog kennels, noting that roads were closed but firefighters and rescue teams in boats were on the way.
By Tuesday afternoon, it had received hundreds of applications from people offering to foster its displaced animals, and encouraged anyone interested in fostering to check in with other rescue groups in need instead. However, it was still seeking donations to help repair the damage to its facilities.
St. Louis saw widespread flash flooding Tuesday in the wake of a colossal downpour that smashed the previous record for daily rainfall. As of mid-day Tuesday, there were no reported injuries to humans, though some people had to be rescued from their homes by boat.
The rain came after an extended drought in the area, which may have exacerbated the flooding by leaving the ground dry and hard, meteorologist Marshall Pfahler told The Associated Press. He added that a bigger factor is that the rain largely came down on areas of asphalt and concrete, rather than grass or dirt that could absorb it more of it.