By Briana Kim
Social Media Specialist
It’s difficult to turn on the news and not read about a natural disaster occurring somewhere in the country. It’s unexpected and always comes when we least expect it. It’s even more difficult to hear about the animals that are affected—especially people’s pets.
Preparation is key when it comes to making sure your pets are safe if a natural disaster occurs: This can range from a flood or a fire to an earthquake or even a tornado. With Mother Nature, anything is possible. Below are some tips to make sure you and your pet are prepared in case a natural disaster hits:
Have copies of your pet’s veterinarian records- If your pet needs to get treated, it’s good for the veterinarian to have a copy of your pets medical history, in case they’re not able to electronically access his records. In addition to this, if you have to take your pet to a shelter, some shelters may require to see your pets veterinary records to make sure he’s up-to-date on his shots before being allowed to stay.
Make sure your pet has identification on them at all times-Meaning, make sure he’s wearing a collar with your contact information, and all are current. It’s also great to make sure he is microchipped, and that is up-to-date as well. If they happen to get separated from you, this will increase his chances that he will make his way back home to you.
Pack five days worth of food and water, for yourself and your pet and have an evacuation pack ready to go –According to the Humane Society of the United States, pet parents should pack enough food and water for at least five days. Along with food and water, you want to pack pet feeding dishes and bowels, an extra leash, dish soap, paper towels, an extra blanket, a flashlight, and toys for your pets. If it’s a cat, make sure to pack a pillow. Packing an emergency kit for the humans in your family is also important.
Arrange a designated caregiver ahead of time to care for your pet- If you have to evacuate and cannot take your pet with you, leave them with a person you trust that you’ve made arrangements ahead of time to care for your pet. If you happen not to be home, make sure the person has a copy of your house key so they can go into your house and rescue your pet. With that said, not all shelters accept pets so it’s best to call your local veterinarian to see if they have kennels available where you can house your pup or if they have a list of kennels they recommend for boarding. You can also research hotels ahead of time to see which ones accept pets and what their pet policy is.
Click here for more information on how to prepare your pets in light of a natural disaster.