If you live in an area that's prone to hurricanes, you probably know the importance of creating a safety plan for your family during hurricane season. In the event of a serious storm, you may need to evacuate, or you may need to be prepared to deal with flooding, power outages, and other hurricane-related problems. And if you're a pet owner, it's important that your safety plan includes your pet as well. Take a look at some of the things you can do to make sure that your pet is protected during hurricane season.
Identify Pet-Friendly Shelters
Because you might have to evacuate, it's important to know where the shelters are in your area. And if you have a pet, you may not be able to just go to the nearest shelter—you'll need to find one that accepts pets as well as humans. This is important, because if it's unsafe for you to stay home, it's unsafe for your pet as well.
One way to find pet-friendly shelters is to check with your veterinarian or local animal hospital—they may have a list of pet-friendly shelters in the area. If you are going to evacuate with your pet, do so early—because not all shelters accept pets, the ones that do tend to fill up early. It may be a good idea to identify a backup shelter, in case the nearest pet-friendly shelter is closed, or a friend, relative, or pet-friendly hotel that you can get to with your pet if a pet-friendly shelter is not available.
Make an Emergency Kit
While you're stocking up on emergency supplies like bottled water, flashlights, and canned goods, be sure that you also put together an emergency supply kit for your pet. This should include food and water for your pet, a manual can opener for canned food, food bowls, leashes, harnesses, pet carriers, toys, and bedding.
You should also stock up on any medication that your pet takes regularly, including heart worm or flea medications. Make sure that you have a pet first aid kit as well. Finally, include your pet's medical records, including their vaccination records. If you need to get into a shelter or leave your pet in a boarding facility in a safe area, you will need to be able to show that they've had all their shots.
Consider Getting Microchipped
It's unfortunately very common for pets to become lost during natural disasters like hurricanes. Even if you plan carefully, it's possible that you and your pet could end up separated somewhere along the way. Having your pet microchipped could be the key to reuniting you with your pet after the storm has passed.
Microchipping is a quick and painless process, and the chip contains information that will allow veterinarians, animal hospitals, shelters, or humane societies to contact you if they happen to end up with your pet. It's a good idea for your pet to have a collar with tags, too, but these could fall off or get lost during a disaster. A microchip is much less likely to disappear.
Your pet deserves to have as much preparation for the hurricane season as you have. Advance planning could prevent a tragedy for your family and your pet.Share