A Man Carried A Rabbit Away From The Flames In California. Here Are Other Ways To Help.

"If only the world had more of this man's heart, we'd find true love world peace."

As several wildfires continue to rage in southern California, the Internet has been bombarded with heartbreaking images of destroyed land, trees, and homes. However, one wildfire video is going viral today because it shows a simple act of compassion in the midst of a truly dangerous and devastating event.

Per People, the video below shows a man bravely approaching one of the wildfires as a rabbit darts into the blaze. Upon losing sight of the animal, the unidentified man is visibly overwhelmed and distressed, but he is quickly able to locate the rabbit and pick it up.


The video ends with the man holding the rabbit in his arms, looking to bring it to a safer location. ABC News reports this interaction took place on Highway 1 in Ventura County as the massive Thomas Fire raged just feet from the nearby road. Though the news outlet said the man declined to be interviewed after his act, he's earned praise from millions online.

In fact, just eight hours after posting the video, ABC News has received hundreds of encouraging comments. "If only the world had more of this man's heart, we'd find true love world peace," wrote one.

Another added, "So touching. So human. I see this as an attempt to do something, ANYTHING, no matter how small, to help another in a dire situation." 

Live Science, however, cautioned others from going out in search of animals to save. 

"In general, wild animals are good at dealing with wildfires, scary events that are still more or less regular features of many ecosystems," staff writer Rafi Letzter writes. He even notes that small mammals that make their homes in burrows often have the option of going underground when fires burn the surface, and most do "just fine."

And, as Slate points out, trying to save an animal that might otherwise be perfectly fine could lead to people having to rescue you.

According to The New York Times, the four largest fires currently burning in southern California had scorched a combined 116,000 acres in Los Angeles and Ventura counties as of Thursday morning, and none of those fires were close to being contained. The publication also reported some 200,000 people have been told to evacuate their homes, and an additional 300 structures have already been destroyed.

So if it's help you want to give, it may be worth turning your focus to the plight of southern Californians and their domestic pets.

If you're in the area, many local blood centers are temporarily closed, but you can follow Blood Centers of the Pacific on Facebook for updates.

The American Red Cross has already opened at least seven shelters for those who need to evacuate, and is currently accepting donations.

GoFundMe launched a hub of verified campaigns to help those impacted by the wildfires, allowing donors to focus their support on individual families in need.

You can text UWVC to 41444 and donate to Ready Ventura County's aid efforts.

And, if it's still animals you're after, The Los Angeles County Animal Care Foundation and the Humane Society Of Venture County could use a hand to feed and care for the hundreds of animals they have taken in since the fires began. Check out the Humane Society's Amazon wishlist.


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