June is pet preparedness month. This month is all about how to be prepared with pets for disasters. This could be hurricanes, fires, earthquakes, etc. Unfortunately, many people forget to include their pets in their emergency plans. We don’t ever want anyone to be stuck trying to figure out how to best care for their pets in the face of an emergency so here are 4 things you can do to be prepared.
- Know Your Area
It is best to do your research and get informed about disasters that can affect where you live. This also includes disasters or emergencies that may include evacuations or even shelter in place. If you have an idea of what to prepare for, this will help you make a plan. Another way to know what is going on in your area is to make sure you know your local weather and emergency alert radio stations. You can also download apps to your phone and make sure to enable your alerts. Visit your town’s website or give them a call to get better informed about potential threats in your area.
- Build An Emergency Kit For Your Pets
In addition to the emergency and first aid kits you have for your family, you should have a separate kit for your pets. This will make it so much easier during an emergency to identify and quickly access the specific items your pet will need. The kit should include the basic items that your pets would need such as a few days’ supply of food, water, any medicines they need, collars and harnesses, pet carriers or crates, familiar items such as bedding and toys, etc. (see link at end of this blog to get a detailed list of what to include).
- Prepare Records and Identification
It is so important to have your pets’ medical records prepared with you in the event of an emergency for many reasons. If you need to stay in a hotel, if you end up needing to board your pets, or if you become separated. You can have paper records in a waterproof container or if you can, keep them digitally. Many vet clinics offer digital records of your pet’s that you can access but if your clinic does not, then have them email you a copy of your pet’s records. Also, many apps such as pet insurance will have an area for you to store your pet’s records digitally. Another important record to have is a picture of you and your pet together. This will help identify your pet if you become separated.
Paws To Consider: Get your pet microchipped! This will help increase the chances of them being returned to you if you do happen to get separated. Just make sure to always keep your information on file up to date!
- Make A Plan
When you fail to plan you plan to fail! Set aside some time in the next week or so to devise a plan for an emergency so everyone knows what to do. Think about things such as what to do if you are not home-who do you have in the area that can check on your animals? Make a list of shelters in the area, pet-friendly hotels within a 50-mile radius of your home, identify pet boarding facilities, locate where you will store your pet’s emergency kit so anyone can grab it, who will be responsible for what pet, etc.
You can get more information at https://www.ready.gov/pets where you can get help finding pet-friendly hotels, links to weather apps and alerts as well as find a list of recommended items to put in your pet emergency kit.
At VCPI, we want your pets to stay safe and would be happy to go over any questions you may have regarding pet preparedness! Give us a call at 720-851-0820 or visit us at www.vcparker.net.