Emergency Preparedness for Pets: Peace of Mind When Disaster Strikes
Whether natural or manmade, a disaster is something that nobody wants to think about. While residents of the Chicagoland area have experienced few disasters in recent years, tornados, fire, and damage from ice and severe snow are always looming threats. Being prepared for an emergency is critical to protecting your loved ones, and that includes emergency preparedness for pets.
Gather Your Supplies
Storing a pet-friendly supply kit in an easily accessible location is vital to emergency preparedness for pets. Your pet’s kit should include:
- Extra collar/ID tags
- Muzzle (if needed)
- Medical and vaccination records
- Prescription medications/supplements
- Extra food, bottled water, and collapsable bowls
- Blankets and towels
- Pet first aid kit
Hold a family meeting to discuss caring for your pet during an emergency. Everyone should be in agreement about where the emergency kit will be located, how to evacuate your pet, and how to perform basic pet first aid.
Emergency Preparedness for Pets
Making calm, rational decisions in the middle of an emergency can be difficult, but having a plan in place for your pet can help relieve part of that burden.
- Never leave your pet outside during a weather emergency, and never leave them behind in the event of an evacuation. Remember, if it’s not safe for you, it’s not safe for your pet.
- Make sure your pet’s microchip and ID tags are up-to-date.
- Staying current on your pet’s vaccinations and parasite prevention is crucial to their health and safety during an emergency. Not only is their risk of exposure increased during a disaster situation, but many emergency shelters and boarding facilities will not accept pets without proof of current vaccinations.
- Your pet’s safety may depend on their ability to listen and get along with other people and pets. If you have yet to make training and socialization a priority, now is the time to do so.
If You Must Leave
During some emergency situations, you may need to evacuate your home. Unfortunately, not all emergency shelters allow pets, so it’s important to be aware of pet-friendly options in advance. Consider the following:
- Friends or family who would welcome your pet
- Pet-friendly hotels in the area
- Local kennels
- Rescues or shelters that temporarily house pets during an emergency
- Nearby campgrounds
When it comes to emergency preparedness for pets, what’s good for us is usually good for them. If you have additional questions, please don’t hesitate to contact The Pet Experts at Springbrook Animal Care Center!