This year, May 11th will be the National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day. This is a vitally important day for all you pet moms and dads—taking care of your furry kids isn’t just about giving them the right food, exercise, and medication. It’s also about giving them the best chance of survival when the worst-case scenario happens. Most of the time, that means natural disasters such as earthquakes, fires, tornadoes, and floods. It’s almost guaranteed that you have a plan in place for what to do when disaster strikes, but too often these plans don’t include specific instructions and protocols to make sure that the family pet escapes as well.
Today we’ll be giving you a short primer on what you can do to ensure that you and your pet make it safe and sound.
Have an emergency plan for your pet
Like we said before, we humans have a better chance of survival in these disasters when we’re prepared, so investing the same kind of preparation for your pet is the first step.
Knowing the safe places to bring your pet is the bare minimum you’ll need. If emergency shelters in your area do not allow animals, you’ll have to find alternate shelter for them. Friends or relatives may be able to take them in, or possibly veterinary facilities or pet-friendly hotels. Your best bet is to contact animal control in your area to find out your options for alternate housing.
If you won’t be able to evacuate with your pet, you’ll have to find an alternate caretaker for them—leaving them behind to fend for themselves is the worst possible case! Your designated caretaker can be a neighbor or family. It’s a big responsibility, so leave it to someone you can trust.
Keep a kit ready
You likely already have a go-bag with the essentials in case of emergencies—it’s simply a matter of minutes to put together something similar for your pet. You’ll want a leash or harness, or a pet carrier if your pet requires it. The rest of the basics will also come in handy. Food and water with bowls for them, as well as any medications your pet needs.
Just as important are your pet’s vaccination and medical records. One thing that people tend to forget is a picture of you and your pet together for easier identification should they get lost. This is important! Being able to definitively show that you are a pet’s owner can save you massive headaches and hassle later on when trying to find your furry buddy. Keep all of these in a watertight container.
Bonuses would be plastic baggies, a small litter box for cats, and maybe blankets and toys if your pet is used to them. Treats could also help keep your pet calm in the midst of the chaos.
When disaster strikes
Bring along your pet with you if you can. Don’t stay behind to take care of your pet when you’ve been told to evacuate or to seek shelter! If you are incapable of moving with your pet, this is where our emergency plan comes into play. If you have a designated caretaker, inform them immediately. If you don’t have a caretaker and absolutely must leave your pets, let emergency responders know that you have animals needing rescue. There are stickers available that you can put on your door or in your window stating what kinds of animals you have and your emergency contact. Hopefully, you’ll never have to resort to this.
Letting your pet roam free during an emergency is also unacceptable. Not only will they be scared, they may also spook other people and animals trying to evacuate.
At the end of the day, our pets look to us to take care of them even when the worst happens. Being prepared is the least we can do for them! Not just during big emergencies, but also on a day-to-day basis. For your daily pet care needs, Pet Nanny Inc are ready and standing by to help when you can’t be around for your pets. Follow us on our social media accounts or give us a call at 734-981-6108. Alternatively, you can use our on-line contact form and we’ll get in touch with you!