by Amber Drake

Re: Your Pet Disaster Preparedness Plan

Re: Your Pet Disaster Preparedness Plan

Re: Your Pet Disaster Preparedness Plan

Hey, fellow pet parents! If you're like us, then your furry (or scaly, or feathery) friends are part of the family. But when it comes to emergency preparedness, our four-legged family members often get overlooked. Sure, you've got your emergency food stash and gallons of water, but what about Fido and Whiskers?

Natural disasters like hurricanes, wildfires, floods, and earthquakes can strike without much warning. Preparing your pet for these unfortunate events is just as important as preparing yourself. Below are some essential tips on how to best prepare your pet for a natural disaster. Let’s dive in!

Gather Supplies for Your Emergency Kit for Pets

Being prepared can make a world of difference when disaster strikes. So let’s not waste any more time and get right into what you’ll need.

First thing's first—gather your supplies. Here's a quick list to get you started:

  • Sturdy, easy-to-carry bag or plastic container with a lid
  • Pet food and water
  • Medicine and medical records
  • Leash and collar or harness
  • Carrier or crate
  • Comfort items
  • Sanitation supplies
  • First aid supplies
  • Probiotics like Daily Dog or Daily Cat
  • Identification tags and documents
  • Ziplock bags and a permanent marker

Alright, got everything? Let’s assemble your pet emergency kit!

Food and Water

When preparing for a natural disaster, it's crucial to pack a sufficient amount of food and water specifically for your pets. A good rule of thumb is to pack a 3-7 day supply of your pet's regular food in an airtight, waterproof container. If your pet eats wet food, make sure you also have a manual can opener packed in your kit. 

For water, allocate at least a 3-day supply exclusively for your pet; keep in mind that pets can get just as dehydrated as humans, especially during stressful situations. Store the water in clean, sealable containers to prevent contamination. 

And don't forget to include a portable pet dish or bowl for both food and water. This ensures that in the rush of an emergency evacuation, your pet's nutritional needs won't be a source of stress for either of you.

Medicine and Medical Records

When it comes to packing medicine and medical records for your pets in preparation for a natural disaster, organization and foresight are key. If your pet is on any prescription medications, set aside at least a one-week supply in a waterproof, sealable bag or container. 

Clearly label this with the medication name, dosage, and any special instructions. Don't forget any necessary accessories, like syringes or measuring spoons. Along with the medication, include a copy of your pet's medical records and vaccination history. 

Place these crucial documents in a Ziplock bag to keep them dry and safe. It's also helpful to write down your vet’s contact information, your pet’s name, and any specific medical conditions your pet has with a permanent marker, so emergency animal healthcare providers have all the information they need.

Leash and Collar or Harness

Pack an extra leash and collar, preferably one with an ID tag containing your contact details and any critical medical information about your pet.

Carrier or Crate

Include a collapsible or travel-sized crate or carrier that's big enough for your pet to turn around and lie down in comfortably. Make sure it’s secure so your pet can’t escape.

Comfort Items

Pack your pet’s favorite toy, blanket, or a piece of your clothing to help keep them calm and comfortable.

Sanitation Supplies

Pack a roll or two of waste bags for dogs or portable litter boxes for cats. And don’t forget the sanitizing wipes to clean your hands or your pet when necessary. 

First Aid Supplies

Include items like gauze, bandages, antiseptic wipes, and any other first aid items recommended by your vet. Adding in probiotics can help your dog or cat with stress-related diarrhea (which is common during times like these) and maintain gut health.

Identification Tags and Documents

In chaotic situations, it’s easy for pets to get lost. Microchipping is an excellent way to ensure you can be reunited with your pet if you get separated. Make sure the chip is registered and the contact information is up-to-date.

Additionally, your pet should have a collar with an ID tag that includes your name, phone number, and any urgent medical needs your pet may have. Temporary tags can be written on them in case you’re staying somewhere other than home.

Miscellaneous Items

Consider adding a list of pet-friendly shelters and hotels, as well as contacts for emergency animal treatment facilities and your vet. If you aren’t sure where to go, check out BringFido or another related service so you’re not scattering for a place to stay with your pets.

Practice The Scenario

Okay, no one's thrilled about a disaster, and preparing for it isn’t thrilling, but the point is, you should practice your evacuation plan. Just like you'd have a fire drill, have a 'disaster drill' that includes your pets. This helps you identify any issues, like a carrier that's too small or how to efficiently pack your pet’s emergency kit.

Final Step: Store and Maintain

After everything is packed, store your pet disaster preparedness kit in a cool, dry place, and make sure every human in the house knows where it's stored.

Don’t forget to check the kit every few months to replenish expired items like food, water, and medication. You can set a reminder on your phone so you won’t forget.

And voila! You've just assembled a top-notch emergency kit that can make a big difference for your pet during a natural disaster. You're not just a pet parent now; you're a super-prepared pet parent!

→Highly Recommended: Your pet is bound to be under stress (just like you) during an emergency. Protecting their gut, which is highly vulnerable to stress, will help keep them healthy and safe. Daily Dog and Daily Cat are the perfect additions to your emergency plan for pets.← 

Photo by Peter Albanese on Unsplash

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