Thursday, August 15, 2013

Disaster Preparation - Evacuate Your Pet Safely

Many pets have been lost or even killed in floods, earthquakes, fire, tornadoes or hurricanes. It is not because we don't care about our furry friends, we just don't think about preparing a pet evacuation plan. With millions of pets in the United States, they are often considered members of the family. Making an evacuation plan ahead of time for both your family and your pets will give you the best chance for the safety of all.

Even if you are able to stay in the home during a crisis, be prepared and plan for the worst. If you do have to evacuate to a safer location, there are a few things you can do now to ensure your pet's safety. The best thing to do if you have time before disaster strikes, is to take your pet to a friend or family member outside of the area. Make sure that they are aware of your pet evacuation plan and agree to take care of your pet until it is safe for the animal to return home. This is probably the best thing to do, so you don't have to worry about and take care of your pet as well as your family during the disaster. Alternatives are to have a list of kennels or emergency animal shelters who will care for your pet. If your whole family has to evacuate, find a couple pet-friendly motels or hotels that can accommodate all of you.

All pets should be leashed and wear a collar and with current identification, which includes the pet's name, owner's name and phone number and the vet's phone number if possible. A crate should be available, because animals often get scared and tend to flee. This will keep your pet close to you at all times. If your pet does run away out of fear or gets lost, make sure your animal has a microchip with your current contact information. When the animal is found and brought to a shelter, the microchip is scanned and your pet can be returned to you.

Just as you have an emergency kit for you and your family, so should Fido. It can be as simple as, a minimum of a three day supply of can or dry food and a few bottles of water. any medications, a blanket and a crate. Preparing a pet evacuation plan in advance can save you time and worry if you need to move your furry friend to a safer location.

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