April is Pet First Aid Awareness Month in addition to the onset of issues associates with the changing spring weather.
What can you do to prepare for a disaster?
How To Prepare Your Pets For a Weather Disaster
If a weather disaster were to hit your home, what would happen to your pets?
It is easy to forget about our pets when there is a weather emergency and so much to worry about.
It is best to be as prepared as possible for this emergency.
- Ready.gov recommends preparing an animal emergency supply kit and developing a pet care buddy system before that weather emergency hits.
- If you already know that your area is under the threat of ominous weather, keep an eye on your pets and always know where they are.
- Try not to act too panicked or excited as pets often read this and act accordingly.
- If you evacuate your home, DO NOT LEAVE YOUR PETS BEHIND!
Think about what you need on a daily basis and then the things that usually happens in your vet’s office.
- Pet food, bottled water, medications, veterinary records, cat litter/pan, manual can opener, food dishes, first aid kit and other supplies with you in case they’re not available later.
- Make sure identification tags are up-to-date and securely fastened to your pet’s collar. If possible, attach the address and/or phone number of your evacuation site. If your pet gets lost, his tag is his ticket home.
- Make sure you have a current photo of your pet for identification purposes.
- Make sure you have a secure pet carrier, leash or harness for your pet so that if he panics, he can’t escape.
What to do if there is a disaster
Even if you have prepared as best as possible, being prepared entirely for a disaster can be a challenge.
- Bring your pets inside immediately.
- Have newspapers on hand for sanitary purposes. Feed the animals moist or canned food so they will need less water to drink.
- Animals have instincts about severe weather changes and will often isolate themselves if they are afraid. Bringing them inside early can stop them from running away. Never leave a pet outside or tied up during a storm.
- Separate dogs and cats. Even if your dogs and cats normally get along, the anxiety of an emergency situation can cause pets to act irrationally. Keep small pets away from cats and dogs.
- In an emergency, you may have to take your birds with you. Talk with your veterinarian or local pet store about special food dispensers that regulate the amount of food a bird is given. Make sure that the bird is caged and the cage is covered by a thin cloth or sheet to provide security and filtered light.
Prepare for Emergencies Now: Information for Pet Owners.
Humane Society of America Put together your disaster kit
American Humane Association
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)