May 9th is Animal Disaster Preparation Day. Of course, many of us have learned a lot about preparation lately. However, even with the coronavirus dominating the news, it’s important to be ready for other issues, such as fires and floods. Here, a Greater Cincinnati vet offers a few pointers on animal disaster preparation.
If you don’t have a travel carrier for your pet, this is the time to get one. For dogs or cats, we recommend getting a hard-shell carrier. For birds, you can get a small, portable cage. For pocket pets and reptiles you can use a storage tote. Just make sure to add air holes, which should allow ventilation without letting your pet out.
It’s not a bad idea to have an emergency bag ready. You’ll want to include a few weeks’ worth of food, treats, and medicine, as well as bedding, toys, dishes, grooming supplies, a towel, and a leash and collar. If you have a dog or cat, include some pet-calming products as well. Fido will need a tie-out line and muzzle, which some shelters may require. Fluffy needs a litterbox and litter. Keep these things in or near the carrier, in a spot that’s easy to get to.
Keeping up with your pet’s wellness care is very important, even—and especially—this year. Vaccinations protect your furry buddy from dangerous diseases such as rabies, while parasite control will help battle fleas and ticks. We also strongly recommend getting your pet microchipped. Also, make sure that they are wearing proper ID tags.
If you do need to evacuate with your pet, you will need to bring some documentation with you. Put copies of your animal pal’s vaccination and medical records in a plastic bag and seal it. You may want to email photos of them to yourself, so you always have them. It may also be helpful to print out a list of all pet-safe shelters or hotels within a few hours’ drive.
Make sure that you and your family have a plan in place in case of things like fires, floods, hurricanes, or earthquakes. Include your furry friend in that planning! After all, pets are part of the family, too!
As your Greater Cincinnati vet clinic, we’re dedicated to helping our community get through this difficult year. Please feel free to contact us anytime.