San Diegans thankful pets allowed into evacuation centers

SAN MARCOS - Thousands of pets and animals were put in harm's way this week. Some were evacuated while others had to brave the flames when their owners could not get to them.

Mission Hills High School partnered with the San Diego Humane Society and set up a couple of places inside the gym specifically for pets.

People brought dogs and cats – even a pet dove and tortoise. San Diegans forced by flames to leave their homes were eternally grateful they were able to bring their beloved animals.

"They're like our kids," said Ross Brady. "It's like having a kid. You wouldn't leave a kid behind so we don't want to leave the animals behind."

Brady and his wife Vicki brought their pet dove Baby and Prudence the cat. After two nights at the shelter, they were headed for a hotel.

David Carroll had to leave his San Marcos home in a hurry as the fire raged nearby. He too is thankful he could bring his dog, Mikey.

"Amazing. I mean, just the peace of mind to know that he's safe and he's with me," he said.

Others with larger animals found refuge at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Adding even more stress to one couple's evacuation, their horse was pregnant and due any minute. The delivery of the beautiful black foal became the silver lining.

But not every pet was able to make it to safety. Four-year-old Oakley's mom was not allowed back home to get the bull terrier. So Sam Nguyen called 10News.

With media access, reporter 10News Joe Little went in and picked Oakley up. He delivered the pooch to Nguyen and captured the emotional reunion on camera.

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