National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day
Crosspoint Veterinary Hospital, Covington, Louisiana
Here in South Louisiana we are no stranger to hurricanes. After Hurricane Katrina when thousands of pets were abandoned and displaced, FEMA established National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day. May 11th recognizes what it takes to prepare our family pets for situations that arise. With hurricane season approaching soon, please consider these tips that could help you in the time of crisis:
- Food - Using an airtight, waterproof container, keep at least three days of food
- Water – Have at least three days of water specifically for your pet
- Medications, medication and vaccine records – Contact your veterinarian for refills on any medications and have medical records and proof of vaccines
- First aid kit – Bandage rolls, bandage tape, scissors, antibiotic ointment, flea/heartworm prevention, latex gloves, rubbing alcohol and saline solution
- Microchip or Collar ID, harness and leash – Be sure to have contact information up-to-date contact information. Contact your veterinarian for more information on updating your records or for a microchip purchase (June is also National Microchipping Month – Keep checking in for a special discount!)
- Crate or Pet Carrier – Pet carriers should be large enough so that your pet can stand, turn and lie down.
- Sanitation – Include pet litter and a litter box, paper towels, trash bags, and household chlorine bleach (no scented or color safe bleaches)
- A picture of you and your pet together – In an instance where you and your pet become separated, you will need to be able to prove ownership. With the picture, it is also important to provide detailed information like breed, age, color, sex, and other characteristics that would distinguish them.
- Comfort Items – Be sure to bring your pet’s favorite blanket or toy with them to help keep them calm and comfortable.
If you must evacuate, take your pets with you if possible. Please know that some public shelters do not allow pets. Plan in advance for shelter alternatives such as pet friendly hotels, out of town relatives/friends.
Plan on how you assemble your pets on short notice. Keep your kits in an area that is easily accessible.
Dogs should NEVER be chained outdoors.
Also consider a backup emergency plan in case you can’t care for your animals-seek out neighbor, local friend or relative support to help.
Locate a veterinary or animal hospital in the area where you may be seeking shelter in case of need of medical care.