Hurricanes, floods, wildfires and other natural disasters can – and do – strike at any time. It’s important to remember that if your home is not safe for your family to stay, then it isn’t safe for your pets.
Now is the time to develop a disaster plan that includes your dogs, cats, family iguana, or other pets. If you evacuate, the most important thing you can do to protect your pets is to take them with you. Consider the items in the list below when building a survival kit for your pet(s).
PET SURVIVAL KIT ITEMS
- Medical records that include the vaccination history; all necessary shots need to be current
- Collars that include up-to-date identification and rabies tags
- A leash
- Crate or carrier to secure your pet(s)
- Two-week supply of food (consider canned food to reduce water needs, and remember a manual can opener)
- Two-week supply of clean water (large dogs need one gallon per day)
- Bowls to serve your pet water and food
- First-aid supplies
- Basic medications, such as flea and tick preventatives
- Two-month supply of special medications, such as for heartworms
- Hygiene supplies that can include a litter box, litter, newspapers, and bags to pick up pet waste
- Grooming supplies
- Toys and treats
- Recent photo(s) of you with your pet(s)
Don’t wait until a disaster strikes to do your research. If you plan to evacuate, contact hotels and motels that will accept pets overnight. Ask about restrictions such as number of pets, size, breed and species. For lodgings with a “no pet” policy, ask if that can (or will) be waived in an emergency. Call ahead for reservations. And if you do have more than one pet, be prepared to house them separately. Prepare a list of local boarding facilities and veterinary offices that might be able to shelter animals in emergencies and include their 24 hour telephone numbers.
Remember, when you are stressed, so are your animals. Storms can cause pets to act out due to anxiety and even the best-behaved furry friend can experience a spat under stressful times.
Remember: you are responsible for keeping your pet(s) safe. Plan ahead, to ensure the safety of your ENTIRE family.