The first day of spring is just behind us and April showers have begun. Spring also marks the beginning of tornado season.
The American Red Cross recommends three actions that can help prepare you to deal with a natural disaster or emergency; get a kit, make a plan and be informed.
According to the American Red Cross, you should make sure your emergency kit has at least three days of supplies in an easy-to-carry container. You should remember to check the kit and restock every six months. Remember to pack a kit with pet supplies as well. If it is not safe for you to stay and you must evacuate, it is not safe for your pets either.
Each pet should have food and water with a collar, leash or carrying case for easy travel. Don’t forget a small litter box or plastic bags. Make sure you have each pet’s tags, any medications and vaccination information.
Current photos of your pet could help eliminate confusion if your pet becomes lost. Information on feeding schedules, medical conditions, behavior problems and the name and number of your veterinarian is important incase you have to board your pets. If easily transported, toys and bedding are recommended.
To be well prepared a pet owner can follow these tips:
. Know which hotels accept pets. Map places along your evacuation route that will accept you and your pet in an emergency. Ask if no-pet policies could be waived in an emergency. It is also a good idea to call ahead for reservations if you have warning of an evacuation.
. Prepare a list of phone numbers. Be sure to maintain a list of friends, relatives, boarding kennels, animal shelters or veterinarians that can care for your animals in the case of an emergency.
. Include your pets in drills. This can help them become used to entering and traveling in their carriers easily.
. Keep up to date with vaccines. Many pet shelters require proof of current vaccinations to reduce the spread of disease.
. Make sure your pet wears identification. During the chaos of a disaster, pets can become easily scared and confused. Consider having your pet microchipped incase they do become lost. If your pet is not microchipped
make sure they are wearing collars with securely fastened, up-to-date identification.
Disaster warnings are often issued hours or days in advance. Take advantage of the warning and call ahead to confirm your emergency shelter arrangements for you and your pet. Make sure your pets identification is correct and that your pet disaster supplies are ready.
After a disaster, be aware that your pet’s behavior may change. Keep a close eye on them to protect them and others. Examine fences and gates that could have been damaged and be aware of debris, spilled chemicals or other substances that could harm your pet. It is always a good idea to have a veterinarian check your pet after any kind of disaster or emergency.
Posted under In the News
This post was written by dwagner on April 8, 2010