Disaster can strike at any moment, and in some parts of the country, it already has. September marks National Disaster Preparedness Month, and to help keep you and your pets safe, we urge all pet parents to stay prepared for disaster season.
Creating a “go bag” filled with emergency items is the best way to remain prepared and be able to evacuate with your pets quickly during a disaster or emergency situation. Below are some items we suggest you have in your emergency bag.
Food, water, treats and any required medication. You may not know how long you will be displaced from your home for, so pack enough of these items for two full weeks.A crate or carrier. While this may not fit into an emergency bag, always keep your pet’s crate or carrier nearby in case of emergency. Be sure to also write your pet’s name, your name and contact information on your pet’s carrier.Leash, collar and ID tags. Your pet should always be wearing their collar and ID tags but be sure to pack a spare of each just in case. Your pet’s ID tag should contain their name, telephone number and any urgent medical needs.An up-to-date microchip. Storms can easily spook our furry friends, which may cause them to bolt. Having an up-to-date microchip makes finding lost pets a lot easier. Veterinary records and a current photo. Photocopies and/or a USB with your pet’s medical records can be a lifesaver. A current photo either on your phone, on the USB or a printed version in your bag can help identify a lost pet. Pet first aid kit. Kits are easy to assemble, and most items can be bought in a drugstore. Ask your veterinarian what items are best to include for your pet. Cat litter with a box, poop bags or pee pads. Our pets will still have to go, so make sure you’re fully prepared with whatever they may need! Favorite toy or blanket. Being away from home and in a new place can be scary. Packing your pet’s favorite toy or blanket can help calm them down during this stressful time. An action plan for both local and long-distance evacuation. Make sure your family or roommates have all agreed upon a place to meet if you are not together when disaster strikes. Be sure that everyone knows where emergency supplies are located. A list of pet-friendly places and reliable people who could care for your pet. In the event that you cannot care for your pet, be sure to have a list of potential friends, family members or even boarding kennels and facilities who can care for them instead.
Don’t wait until it’s too late. Prepare your emergency bag now!