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Preparing Pets for Hurricanes

Hurricane Katrina in 2005 forced 250,000 pets to be left behind out of which 150,000 faced unfortunate deaths. It is important that you prepare your pet for hurricanes and other similar natural disasters. Here are some tips.

Plan Evacuation in Advance

As soon as the hurricane warnings begin to surface, be ready to evacuate along with your pets. Here;s how:

  • Pet Crates: Invest in a quality pet crate/carrier that would accommodate your pet comfortably. It would be great if your pet is used to it.
  • Pet Medications: Prepare a list of all important petmeds. Make sure that you buy only Rx pet meds.
  • Flea and Tick Preventives: It is recommended to apply a topical preventive pet medication like Revolution, Frontline, Bravetco etc. to prevent your pet’s exposure to fleas and ticks.
  • Emergency Box: Prepare an emergency box with all essential supplies like Rx petmeds, food and water bowls, pet food and water (at least 2-week supply), leashes and harnesses, pet beds, litter box, blankets and few toys.
  • Don't Wait: Evacuate as soon as possible. Pets usually sense the approaching disasters and become restless. The smells and sounds accompanying hurricanes may frighten them and the last-minute evacuation may become difficult.

Prepare Identifications and Records

  • Get your pet microchipped.
  • Place pet collars carrying the pet's name and you contact information.
  • Prepare copies of pet med and vaccination records, along with your pet's vet's contact information, and put them in the emergency box.

Check the Accommodations

It is recommended to relocate to someone's place located in the safe area/region. If taking the pet to that place is difficult and if the budget allows, prepare a list of pet-friendly hotels where you can check in.

Not all evacuation shelters allow pets. Make sure that you know the locations of let-friendly shelters in advance. Most of these shelters would require you to produce veterinary and vaccination records. So, keep them handy.

Act as a responsible pet parent during the time of emergency. Don't limit the love and care to keep your little pet calm.