Weather can be very crazy and unpredictable. Living in Georgia, we have to contend with tornadoes, flooding, ice storms, and even the occasional hurricane. This means we need to be prepared throughout the year for several types of weather emergencies. This also means we need to include our pet in our plans.
Flooding and ice storms can lead to a lack of fresh water. Whether the pipes freeze or the water supplies are contaminated by dirty water, there can be an abrupt disruption in our water supply. For this reason, we need to have adequate supplies of water for our entire family and family pets.
You know your pet, and you know how much they drink in a day. Always consider this, and the temperature, when you put away supplies of bottled water.
If you are unsure, a healthy animal needs about 50 mL for every pound during the day in mild temperatures. Consider the temperature and remember, everyone drinks more when it is hotter. Also remember, it can take several days for most relief agencies to get mobilized and into your area. You will need to have adequate supplies for that amount of time.
Food for our pets is also very important. Make sure the food is fresh. Rotate your supplies so the food does not become stale or moldy. Once again, make sure you have several days of food.
Some agencies will have food for your pets, but then again they may not. Most of the relief agencies concentrate on the human, but they are becoming much more aware of the importance of pets in coping with tragedy. You need to assume that you will be responsible for feeding your pet.
I know that weather can come on us very abruptly, however, there are some weather emergencies that can be predicted. If that is the case, make sure you have a plan to leave the area and reach a safe place. Preparation is always best.
If you are displaced and end up in a shelter, your pet may or may not be welcome. So, it is better to find a friend or relative in another town that can house you. If this is not an option, you can find a pet friendly hotel. There are several websites that can direct you to the pet friendly hotels on your evacuation route.
So, you have to leave town with my family and pets. What do you need to take? Of course, you will need to take their food and some water for the travel. You will also need a pet carrier or leash and collar to control your pet in unfamiliar surroundings. This is for his safety and the safety of others. If the family pet is a cat, don’t forget a litter box and litter. She has to use the restroom also. Toys are also a good thing. They provide entertainment and familiarity that can reduce stress for the pet and the owners.
Play was one of the things used with the search and rescue dogs at Ground Zero. The workers and dogs were able to have a few moments of normalcy. It seems small, but it can be very crucial for your pet and family.
Medical issues do not take a break during this time. With that in mind, if your pet is on medication, you will need to keep them handy. There is no guarantee that you will be able to find this medicine at your destination. Also keep a copy of your medical records, including vaccination records, in your pet disaster kit. This will be needed wherever you will be staying, and it will be needed if your pet needs medical attention while away from home.
We all hope a disaster never affects us. However, there are millions of people that have had that thought dashed over the years. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best is always the best advice. Make a disaster plan for your family and keep the family pets in that plan.