Pet Emergency Preparedness

Emergencies come in many forms: fires, floods, winter storms etc. Even though we are lucky here in Alberta, we do remember lots of pets being evacuated due to the Fort McMurray Fires not that long ago. In the event of extreme weather or a disaster, would you know what to do to protect your pet?

 

Leaving pets out of evacuation plans can put pets, pet owners, and first responders in danger. Even if you try to create a safe place for them, pets left behind during a disaster are likely to be injured, lost, or worse.  

 

Be prepared: make a plan and prepare a disaster kit for your pet.

The CDC link here is a good start. It also tells you how to create an emergency pet preparedness kit.

What is Pet Emergency Preparedness?

Emergency preparedness when discussing pets is the idea of having supplies, papers, and a plan ready for when a potential disaster occurs. That disaster can range from an entirely natural event such as a hurricane to something singular to you, like a home fire.

 

Other examples can include a health emergency that prevents you from being home to take care of your pets. If you’re in the hospital, it’s ideal to have a kit ready for someone to look over to take care of your pet while you’re away. In short, there’s a lot that can fall under the pet emergency spectrum.

What Do You Do With Pets During an Emergency?

When an emergency occurs, most pet owners are overwhelmed by the emergency at hand. As for your pets, there are a few things you can do depending on the emergency. If the emergency is an at-home incident, put your pet on a leash or in a crate and bring them outside.

 

If a disaster is happening outside, such as a hurricane or tornado, follow the advice of experts and bring your pet with you. If it’s a medical emergency, contact someone who has access to your home to care for your pet while you’re away. Whatever the case might be, always have enough food and a kit of their papers on deck in case an emergency occurs.

What is Considered Emergency Preparedness?

Emergency preparedness is the act of taking steps to ensure you’re safe before, during, and after an emergency. It can be as straightforward as having an emergency food supply to others having medical equipment and gear ready for everything. That same mentality of being prepared also applies to pet owners.

 

Pets can be frightened and overwhelmed in times of emergency, not sure what’s going on or what they can do. It’s your job to keep your pet safe, healthy, and relaxed no matter what might occur. Being prepared with food, their vet documents, medical supplies, and a crate is one way to be prepared for the worst-case scenario.

CDC Pet Emergency Preparedness Kit

Emergencies come in many forms such as fires, floods, winter storms, or personal emergencies. Even though we’re lucky here in Alberta, we remember many pets being evacuated due to the Fort McMurray Fires not that long ago. In extreme weather or a disaster, would you know what to do to protect your pet?

 

Leaving pets out of evacuation plans can put pets, pet owners, and first responders in danger. Even if you try to create a safe place for them, pets left behind during a disaster are likely to be injured, lost, or worse. Be prepared by making a plan and fixing a disaster kit for your pet. Below is what the CDC recommends as an ideal emergency preparedness kit for your pet.

Documents

  • Photocopied veterinary records

  • Rabies certificate

  • Vaccinations

  • Medical summary

  • Prescriptions for medications

  • Most recent heartworm test result (dogs)

  • Most recent FeLV/FIV test result (cats)

  • Photocopied registration information (ex: proof of ownership or adoption records)

  • Pet description(s) (ex: breed, sex, color, weight)

  • Recent photographs of each of your pets

  • Waterproof container for documents

  • Microchip information (ex: microchip number, name, and number of the microchip company)

  • Your contact information (phone numbers and addresses for your family and friends or relatives you may be staying with)

  • Pet Boarding Instructions

Water, Food, Medications

  • 2-week supply of food for each animal stored in waterproof containers

  • 2-week supply of water for each animal

  • Non-spill food and water dishes

  • Manual can opener

  • Feeding instructions for each animal

  • 2-week supply of any medications (if applicable)

  • Medication instructions (if applicable)

  • 1-month supply of flea, tick, and heartworm preventative

Other Supplies

  • Leash, collar with ID, and harness

  • Litter and litter box (cats)

  • Toys

  • Appropriate-sized pet carrier with bedding, blanket, or towel

  • Pet first aid book and first aid kit

  • Cleaning supplies for accidents (paper towels, plastic bags, disinfectant)

What Do You Do If You Run Out of Pet Emergency Supplies?

In the scenario that you ran out of supplies during an emergency for your pet, there are few things you can do. You can reach out to other pet owners to see if they have anything they can spare. If they don’t, but you can safely go to a store to get them supplies, consider that option as well.

 

On the off chance that it’s not safe to go outside, you can prepare some of their food for the time being. Try coming up with a list that’s safe for your pet to consume, and make them a little meal as you would normally. As long as it’s a way for them to eat and get through it, it should work out well.

How Do You Evacuate With a Pet?

Many varying emergency settings can affect what you do evacuation-wise with your pet. The main rule to follow is if it’s not safe for you, it’s not safe for your pet. 

 

A leash and crate are the two best ways to evacuate your pet safely, so they don’t get away from you. Be sure to reach out to your vet, boarding facilities, animal shelters, family, or friends for specifics on what you should do during the emergency.

Want to Learn More About Pet Emergency Preparedness?

If you hope to learn more about pet emergency preparedness, contact or visit us at Gateway Veterinary Centre! We can give you details related to emergency scenarios, advise you accordingly, and offer plenty of other veterinarian services. Please get in touch if you need more advice regarding specific products, services, or anything your pet needs!

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