While no one wants to spend too much time thinking about worst-case scenarios, a little planning makes it easier to care for pets in an emergency, like a fire or natural disaster. Here are some important things you can do to set up your own Pet Disaster Plan.
Contact hotels and motels outside your local area to check their policies on accepting pets and restrictions on number, size and species. Ask if “no pet” policies can be waived in an emergency. Keep a list of pet-friendly places, including phone numbers.
- Ask friends or relatives if they could shelter your animals.
- Make a list of boarding facilities and veterinarians who could shelter animals in an emergency and include 24-hour phone numbers.
- Ask local animal shelters if they provide emergency shelter or foster care for pets during a disaster.
- Make sure your pet has a microchip and a collar tag with your contact information.
- Keep your pet’s essential supplies in sturdy containers that can be easily accessed and carried. Your pet emergency preparedness kit should include:
✓ Medications, medical records (stored in a waterproof container) and a first aid kit.
✓ Sturdy leashes, harnesses, and/or carriers.
✓ Current photos of your pets.
✓ Food, drinkable water, bowls, cat litter/pan and manual can opener.
✓ Information on feeding schedules, medical conditions, behavior problems, and the name and number of your veterinarian in case you have to foster or board your pets.
✓ Pet bed or toys if easily transportable.
—Harmony Gallegos, owner of Harmony and Pets in Eden Prairie