PLAN AHEAD: TAKING CARE OF YOUR PETS IN A DISASTER
Have you ever thought about what you would do with your pets if you had to evacuate your home? If you haven’t and you think you would just pick up your pets and carry them with you it may not be that easy. Read our steps on how to prepare your pets in the event that you need to evacuate.
Step 1 Get a Rescue Alert Sticker
This easy-to-use sticker will let people know that pets are inside your home. The ASPCA.org and RedRover.org both offer free window cling stickers you can request online.
Step 2 Arrange a Safe Haven
Arrange a safe haven for your pets in the event of evacuation. DO NOT LEAVE YOUR PETS BEHIND. Remember, if it isn’t safe for you, it isn’t safe for your pets. Note that not all Red Cross disaster shelters accept pets, so it is imperative that you have determined where you will bring your pets ahead of time:
- Contact your veterinarian for a list of preferred boarding kennels and facilities.
- Ask your local animal shelter if they provide emergency shelter or foster care for pets.
- Identify hotels or motels outside of your immediate area that accept pets.
- Ask friends and relatives outside your immediate area if they would be willing to take in your pet.
Step 3 Emergency Supplies and Traveling Kits
Keep an Evac-Pack and supplies handy for your pets. Make sure that everyone in the family knows where it is. This kit should be clearly labeled and easy to carry.
Step 4 Choose “Designated Caregivers”
This step will take considerable time and thought. When choosing a temporary caregiver, consider someone who lives close to your residence. He or she should be someone who is generally home during the day while you are at work or has easy access to your home & someone you would give a key to your home to.
Step 5 Evacuation Preparation
If you must evacuate your home in a crisis, plan for the worst-case scenario. If you think you may be gone for only a day, assume that you may not be allowed to return for several weeks.
Step 6 Geographic and Climatic Considerations
Do you live in an area that is prone to certain natural catastrophes, such as tornadoes, earthquakes or floods? If so, you should plan accordingly.
For more information, visit: http://www.cdc.gov/features/petsanddisasters/