Emergency Preparedness For Pets

Are you prepared for an emergency?With Hurricane Dorian advancing upon Puerto Rico and heading toward Florida, now is a good time to make sure that you are prepared for a weather emergency. By the way, this year the Atlantic hurricane season began on May 20 and extends through November 30.

Even if you are not currently in the storm’s path or imminent danger, it is always sage advice to go through a checklist of safety tips and have a disaster plan in mind.



  • Current photo of your pet for identification purposes
  • Emergency kit that includes first aid items, current medications
  • Sanitation and cleaning supplies
  • Secure pet carrier plus a leash/harness
  • Important documents like rabies certificate, microchip information, medical records, license
  • Food and water for at least 3 days
  • Toys and treats [source]

Though most conscientious pet owners already have these things in abundance around the house, it is always a good idea to have a go-to bag with extras just in case. While bad storm weather may currently be in the news, other disasters like house fires can strike when you least expect it.

Many emergency shelters do not allow pets unfortunately. However, for those that do, proof that your pet is up top date on all vaccinations, will most likely be required at a minimum.

Finding a place that will allow pets, unless they are service animals, may not be so easy. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers these links for finding a pet-friendly hotel:

For purposes of this article, I am going to focus on preparation for dog owners. But all animals are precious and if you own a cat or take care of other kinds of animals, your needs may differ.



If you’d like more information on how to make your own Pet First Aid Kit, ASPCApro.org has some helpful advice. They suggest your kit should contain:

  • Absorbent gauze pads
  • Adhesive tape
  • Cotton balls or swabs
  • Fresh 3% hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting (always check with veterinarian or animal poison control expert before giving to your pet)
  • Ice pack
  • Disposable gloves
  • Scissors with blunt end
  • Tweezers
  • OTC antibiotic ointment
  • Oral syringe or turkey baster
  • Liquid dishwashing detergent (for bathing)
  • Towels
  • Small flashlight
  • Alcohol wipes
  • Styptic powder
  • Saline eye solution
  • Artificial tear gel
  • Phone number, clinic name, address of your veterinarian as well as local veterinary emergency clinics.



Order your free Pet Safety PackOne thing all good pet owners should have are alert stickers in case of fire or emergency.

The ASPCA has a free Pet Safety Pack they will send to you if you sign up to receive important alerts and related information.

Or if you wish to purchase your own pet alert/emergency sticker, there are plenty of places to buy one through the internet.

It is essential to make a plan before disaster strikes. For more information about how to prepare, visit www.ready.gov or call 1-800-BE-READY. You can also download and print out the FEMA brochure for handy information.



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