Prepare your pets for disasters

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Tualatin Neighborhood Ready volunteers will meet with you, your neighbors, your church, or other organizations to discuss readiness for your entire household, neighborhood or organization, but this Tualatin Life article focuses on pets. To arrange that comprehensive preparedness presentation either in person or via Zoom, email [email protected]

As you prepare for emergencies, make sure you have a plan for Fluffy and Fido, too. If sudden emergencies or storms arise, evacuation or sheltering will be less stressful for you and your family, including your pets if you have a plan in place.

You may need to evacuate quickly, so having all the pet supplies you need and a safe place for your pets to ride out the storm will make them more comfortable. Talking with your vet or friends who have pets can give you some ideas and advice on how to plan for these emergencies.

Here are some tips to keep your furry friends safe:

Have an evacuation plan

  • Many public shelters and hotels do not allow pets inside, so plan ahead.
  • Know a safe place where you can take your pets before disasters and emergencies happen. 
  • Plan with neighbors, friends or relatives to make sure that someone is available to care for or evacuate your pets if you are unable to do so.
  • Contact your local emergency management office, animal shelter, or animal control office if you’re unsure how to take care of your pet during an emergency.
  • Have your pets microchipped in case they get lost. 

Make emergency kits for your pet

Think first about the basics for survival, such as food and water. Have two kits: a larger one if you are sheltering in place and a lightweight, smaller version if you need to evacuate. Review your kits regularly to ensure that their contents, especially foods and medicines, are fresh.

These are some items you may want to include:

  • Several days’ supply of food in an airtight, waterproof container.
  • Water and bowl with several days’ supply of water.
  • Medicines your pet takes regularly.
  • Collar with ID tag and a harness or leash.
  • Crate or sturdy carrier for each pet.
  • Grooming items.
  • Sanitation needs, such as litter and litter box, newspapers, paper towels, and plastic trash bags.
  • A picture of you and your pet together. This will help you document ownership and allow others to assist you in identifying your pet.
  • Favorite toys and bedding that can reduce stress for your pet.

Visit www.ready.gov/pets to learn more about preparing your pets for disasters or emergencies.