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  • Writer's pictureKaren Onail

Pet Preparedness

June and July is National Pet Preparedness Month!

The following message is from WeatherBug Meteorologist Alyssa Robinette

"June is National Pet Preparedness Month and with the threat of both severe weather and tropical activity ramping up, now is the time to think about your furry family members. Here are some tips to prepare your animals for the elements:

Preparing for Disasters

Evacuation. This could include practicing an evacuation with your animals, so there are more comfortable if you need to evacuate for an emergency. Get your pet familiar with their carrier before dangerous weather hits in case you need to evacuate with them quickly. Animals that are left behind in a disaster can easily be lost or injured, so always take them with you evacuate. Remember to also take their supplies with you.

Shelter. Make a list with addresses and numbers of all the places that you can take your pet in an emergency. Identify pet shelters now before the next emergency as pet displaced by a disaster are frequently kept in shelters or held by local organizations.

Identification. Keep those cute pictures of your animal in your emergency kit to prove ownership. Does your pet have an ID? Put your name and contact information on the ID tag in case you are separated in an emergency. Also consider putting a number for an out of town relative. Think about microchipping your pet. These permanent implants help locate your pet following a disaster. Also, keep your pets' microchip registration current so you can be contacted if your pet gets lost.

Stay informed. Pay attention to wireless emergency alerts for local alerts and warnings sent by state and local public safety officials. Listen to local officials when told to evacuate or shelter in place. Always bring pets indoors at the first sign or warning of a storm or disaster.

Build an Evacuation Kit of Your Pet

Just as your do with your family's emergency supply kit, think first about your pet's basics for survival when making a kit. Have two kits, one larger kit if you are sheltering in a place and one lightweight version if you need to evacuate. Regularly review the kits to ensure the contents, especially foods and medicines, are fresh.

Here are some items you may want in an emergency kit for your pet:

  1. Food. Keep several days' supply of food in an airtight, waterproof container.

  2. Water. Sore a water bowl and several days' supply of water.

  3. Medicine. Keep an extra supply of the medicine your pet takes on a regular basis in a waterproof container.

  4. First aid kit. Talk to your veterinarian about what is most appropriate for your pet's emergency medical needs.

  5. Collar with ID tag and a harness or leash. Include a backup leash, collar and ID tag. Have copies of your pet's registration information and other relevant documents in waterproof container and available electronically.

  6. Traveling bag, crate or sturdy carrier, ideally one for each pet.

  7. Grooming items. Pet shampoo, conditioner and other items, in case your pet needs some cleaning up.

  8. Sanitation items. Include pet litter and litter box (if appropriate), newspapers, paper towels, plastic trash bags and household chlorine bleach to provide for your pet's sanitation needs.

  9. A picture of you and your pet together. If you become separated from your pet during an emergency, a picture of you and your pet together will help you document ownership and allow others to assist you in identifying your pet.

  10. Familiar items. Put favorite toys, treats or bedding in your kit. Familiar items can help reduce stress for your pet.

Hot Weather Tips:

  1. Never leave pets in the car! Temperatures rice quickly even with the windows down and can be deadly for your pet.

  2. Be sure your pets have access to plenty of water.

  3. Make sure your pets have plenty of shady places to go when outdoors.

  4. Test sidewalks with our hand. If it's too hot for your hand, it's probably too hot for your pet.

  5. Avoid exercising with your pet outside in extremely hot days.

Cold Weather Tips:

  1. When you are cold, your pets are cold. Bring pets inside during cold weather!

  2. Wipe your pet's paws after they go outside. Ice- melting chemicals can make your pet sick.

  3. Keep your pets away from antifreeze as they may think it is a sweet dessert!

Weather and disasters are unavoidable but being prepared before disasters strike will help you and your pets chances of surviving.


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