Clarke & Sampson Blog

Are Your Prepared? Keeping Pets Safe During Emergency or Disaster

Keegan Wetzel | Monday, September 22, 2014
Being prepared for potential emergencies or disasters is very important to individuals and families but pets are often overlooked.  What also must be accounted for is planning to keep your pets/animals safe in these times of uncertainty and sufficient preparation is the key to doing so.                                 Pet_blog_picture  
Guidelines for Pets

Here are some helpful points of preparation in the event of an emergency occurring. 

Assemble a "pet-survival" kit that is easy to travel with.  Included in this should be things such as food for your respective animal, water, a first-aid kit, veterinary records, any pertinent medications, and whatever else you may find necessary such as a crate or a blanket.

If you have reason to believe the likelihood of a large storm or potential disaster, bring your pets inside or under a shelter so they will not be as exposed to the adverse conditions that may be coming.  Have plenty of newspaper available for sanitary purposes and keep in mind that feeding them canned food that is moister will help keep them hydrated in the event of a water shortage.

Tips for Evacuation

In the event of evacuation make sure to have a few options to take care of your animals.  Make arrangements with friends or family to assist you in looking after your animal along with contact information of hotels or motels that accommodate animals.  Make sure the pet has up-to-date identification that is able to be worn or a collar or tag.  A secure pet carrier is also important for the secure transportation of the animal.  Perhaps the most important aspect, if evacuation is necessary, is to have a prepared list of emergency phone numbers for animal shelters, veterinary clinics, and acquaintances who would be an immediate option for help in a time of need

If you absolutely must leave your pet behind while evacuating take extreme precaution.  Do not leave them chained up or in a cage because this could put even more stress on them in a situation that is already scary.  Have plenty of food and water available for them; if at all possible it is strongly recommended to take your pets with you because the chances of their survival during disaster or emergency are much less likely than you or another family member.

Guidelines for Large Animals

Larger pets and cattle animals need to be prepared for in the event of emergency or disaster as well.

Make sure these animals have proper identification or notifying tags and evacuate them if possible with prepared routes and alternatives in mind.  

Be sure to have sufficient vehicle transportation available and the destinations have necessary food, water, and equipment for animal care.

Cold Weather Guidelines

In the event of extended below-zero temperatures or blizzards the owner must be prepared to prevent cold weather injuries to livestock which commonly include pneumonia, frostbite, and hypothermia.  

Make sure they have:

  •     Shelter and plenty of dry bedding for insulation to keep as much heat in as possible
  •     Ample food and water

Keep in mind that livestock or larger animals that spend nearly all their time outside are more susceptible to undetected infections or conditions.  It is crucial as an owner to these types of animals to be mindful that these things can occur and must act swiftly & sufficiently in preventing their further spreading.


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