Pet Safety During a Hurricane

Posted by on June 10, 2013 in Tips and Tricks, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Pet Safety During a Hurricane

Hurricanes can be scary, not only for you and your human family but for your furry four-legged friends. Each year, millions of pets are killed or left homeless by natural disasters. These tragedies can easily be prevented with just a bit of planning. These simple tips will help ensure pet safety during a hurricane.

Make a List

Whether you’re evacuating or braving the storm at home, it is important to make sure your pet supplies are well stocked, as these items may run out quickly. If there’s a chance of a last minute evacuation, be sure to have your pet items packed and ready to go.

Cats and Dogs

  • Food and bottled water for 5-7 days if evacuating or 2-3 weeks if riding out the storm
  • Food and water bowls, can opener for canned food
  • Portable and secure travel crate or pet carrier 
  • Poop scooper, potty pads and bags
  • Litter box and litter
  • First aid kit
  • Pet medication
  • Pet documentation, including all medical records
  • Leash, harness, and collar with ID tag 
  • Dawn soap
  • Clean-upsupples
  • Chew treats or toys
  • Bed, blankets

Small Mammals

  • Food and bottled water for 5-7 days if evacuating or 2-3 weeks if riding out the storm
  • Food and water dishes or containers
  • Portable and secure cage or carrier
  • Bedding materials
  • Hideout

Birds

  • Food and bottled water for 5-7 days if evacuating or 2-3 weeks if riding out the storm
  • Food and water dishes or containers
  • Portable and secure travel carrier
  • Bedding materials or other cage liner
  • A blanket over cage, to reduce stress of traveling
  • Spray bottle to keep birds cool in warm weather

Reptiles

  • Food and bottled water for 5-7 days if evacuating or 2-3 weeks if riding out the storm
  • Food and water dishes or containers
  • Portable and secure cage or carrier
  • Bedding materials or cage liner
  • Warming device such as a heating pad

Purchase a Rescue Alert Sticker

If you don’t plan on evacuating, it is important to have a rescue alert sticker, which will notify others that there are pets in your home. Be sure to include the how many and what types of pets are in your house, as well as your veterinarian’s name and contact information. That way, if the worst were to happen, rescue workers would know to keep an eye out for your animal friends.

Have a Boarding Plan

If you plan on evacuating, be sure to plan for a safe place for your pets. Do not under any circumstances leave them behind. If it isn’t safe for you, it won’t be safe for them. If you will be evacuating to a friend or family’s house, be sure to arrange if your pet will be staying with them or in a nearby boarding kennel. If you will be evacuating to a hotel, call ahead and ask if pets are allowed. If you plan on keeping your pet in a boarding kennel, be sure to make reservations in advance as many of these places will be already full.

Visit Your Vet

Before the hurricane, it’s a good idea to make sure your pet is up to date on all vaccinations and healthy, since many kennels will ask for these records. If you own cats or dogs, make sure they are micro chipped in case they become separated from you during the storm.

Calm Your Pet

Since pets can often sense an oncoming storm, your pet may exhibit strange behaviors and act anxious or even aggressive toward their owners. Remember that these behaviors are being caused by fear and it is important for you to do what you can to keep your pet calm before, during and after the storm. Some animals may try to flee, so it is important to keep them indoors and only let them out on a leash. Whether you plan on evacuating or waiting out the storm, make sure your pets have items like toys or chew treats to help keep them busy and relieve stress.

After the Storm

Although the storm may be over, the threat might not be. Your pets may be traumatized or disoriented from the changes caused by the hurricane, so continue to keep them on a leash for at least a few days when going outside. Beware of dangers such as fallen power lines, unstable structures, flooded areas and stray animals and wildlife. Most importantly, do what you can to comfort your pets and ensure that they are safe.