Do you know what to do for yourself and your pets in case of an emergency? Read below for some emergency preparedness tips.

Emergency Preparedness Tips

Emergencies come in all forms. From home fires to hurricanes, families may need to evacuate their home for a myriad of reasons. While most people have an emergency plan in place for their family, it is important that they include the family dog or cat in that preparedness planning. It is recommended that pet parents create an emergency preparedness kit that is easily accessible should the family need to evacuate. Several items should be included in the kit to ensure the pet’s comfort and safety in the event of any emergency:

  1. Proper identification and important records: Most importantly, owners should make sure they have their pet’s proper identification such as a collar and a tag. Additionally, they should make photocopies of their registration information, important veterinary documents and vaccination records and contact information for their veterinarian in case of emergencies.
  2. Current photographs: Owners should keep current photographs of their animals and store them in the emergency preparedness kit for identification purposes and should include themselves in some of the photos to help reclaim a lost animal.
  3. Ventilated carrier, harness or leash: When planning for an emergency evacuation, pet owners should consider the use of a carrier or harness. There are several varieties of crates, barriers or harnesses that will limit your pet’s movement or escape and will ensure the safety of the pet should they have to be transported.
  4. Owner Contact Information: Pet owners should have the following information legibly printed on the pet’s crate or carrier: owner’s name; phone number; address; a description of your pet (distinguishing marks, age, sex, spayed, neutered, etc.); the name of your pet; microchip ID or tattoo ID, if any; pet insurance policy number; and the address and phone number where you or a contact person can be reached if you are not at home.
  5. Pet Essentials: Pet owners should include enough water and pet food for a minimum of three days as well as any necessary medicines or pet care items such as baggies and paper towels for clean-up. It is also recommended that pet owners include grooming items such as a brush.
  6. “Creature” Comforts: Pet owners should remember that a pet’s “creature comforts” can help alleviate some of the stress they experience in an emergency situation. Pet owners should bring items such as their pet’s favorite toy, blanket or a towel retaining the owner’s scent to help comfort the animal.