Did you know that September is National Preparedness Month? It is always important to have a plan for you and your family when disaster or emergencies strike, but what about our pets? If a situation is not safe for us, it is also unsafe for our beloved animals. To help you create a pet emergency plan, we have compiled a list of five main tips to keep you and your four legged family member prepared.
- Have proper identification
Ensure your dog is always wearing a collar with a name tag and current license. A microchip is also vital, as it provides a permanent form of identification and contact information.
- Prepare a pet emergency kit
Keep a few basic essentials in a bin or study container. These may include a bottle of water, a can of nonperishable food, a bowl, a sturdy leash or sliplead, pet first aid items, and a current photo and description of your pet.
- Find a safe place ahead of time
Be aware of hotels and motels outside your immediate area and their policies on accepting pets. You can also create a list of the known shelters and have it ready for the moment you feel you will have to evacuate your home.
- Keep your dog confined and by your side
Many dogs will be frightened by severe weather conditions, sirens, or the sheer anticipation of a natural disaster or emergency. Be sure your dog is confined and supervised inside your home, so you can monitor their behavior and ensure they do not try to exit or hide.
- Communicate with friends, family, or neighbors
Have a plan with somebody near your home so you can easily contact them in case you are not present. Ensure they are comfortable handling your dog, and that they are willing to offer their assistance in getting your pet to safety.