"HSUS is not affiliated with local humane societies and uses only about one percent of its budget to help animals in shelters", said Kay Johnson Smith, president and CEO at the Alliance. San Antonio Animal Care Services has taken in about 200 evacuated pets so far.
"You have to kind of compartmentalize, because if I'm thinking about the disgusting situation people are in, I don't want to transmit that to the animals", Sherry Adams, one of the volunteers said.
If rescue workers could reassure them that their pets would be cared for nearby and available whenever they were able to get back into their homes, they were willing to be rescued themselves, said Dan Paul, Washington director of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). "Expect them to be displaced", the office tweeted.
So when the floodwaters started rising, the alligators came into neighborhoods where they've generally not seen.
The old reunion parking garage is now a SPCA animal shelter - a special home for pets of evacuees, staying at the Dallas convention center.
"You fall in love. But I imagine it will be tough, especially in the evenings, at least more me".
In a press release ahead of the hurricane, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) also issued a warning to animal owners not to chain them outside. The dogs will go to the PAWS shelter in Lynnwood and Seattle Humane Society in Bellevue for adoption and fostering.
Pasado's Safe Haven in Sultan is one of the groups standing by to assist.
The group is a nonprofit organization specialized in technical animal rescue operations following both natural and man-caused disasters, such as fires, floods and other weather events.
"We are standing by and ready".
"I think just like everyone else you feel helpless because we weren't affected directly. In these first hours and days of a crisis like this, sometimes the best thing to do is wait to get the best information and then activate". She's well-trained but says the journey will be one she will never forget.
But there are other compelling images of pets abandoned or separated from families, sitting hungry on swamped cars surrounded by miles of water, even swimming aimlessly in the vast muddy waters looking for somewhere to rest.