Pets need to be included in your family's disaster planning since they depend on you for their safety and well-being. It is important to consider and prepare for your pets before disaster strikes.
Consider the following important steps:
- Find out before a disaster strikes which local hotels and motels allow pets and where pet boarding facilities are located. With the exception of service animals like seeing eye dogs, pets are typically not permitted in emergency shelters.
- Take your pet with you to a hotel, friend's or family member's house, veterinary clinic or kennel in a safe zone. This should be prearranged to avoid surprise and confusion.
- Remember that most boarding facilities will require up-to-date vaccinations and proper identification.
- Purchase tags or have your pet implanted with a microchip (tags and microchips used together are the most effective way of identifying pets).
- Carry your pets’ current picture and medical records with you at all times.
Following is a list of supplies to have prepared for your pet:
- Portable carrier (large enough for the pet to stand up and turn around in)
- Extra leash and collar with an identification tag
- Pet food - at least a two-week supply of dry food in water-tight container or canned food (non-electric can opener needed)
- Water - at least a two-week supply of clean water -- large dogs need one gallon per day
- Up-to-date health records
- Medications - flea and tick and two-month supply of heartworm