DO YOU HAVE AN EMERGENCY PREPARATION PLAN FOR YOUR PETS?
During a natural disaster pets and people are panicked but keeping a clear head and being prepared during an emergency can save your pet’s life.
Flooding- Although it might seem ridiculous, pet life preservers can be a lifesaver. Even an inflatable life raft is valuable. Flash Floods create dangerous fast-moving currents and most of us are not capable of holding a 20 pound or worse 70-pound dog over our head for any period of time whether we are walking through still or rapid moving water. You should also have a life preserver for yourself.
Medications for pets- If your pet's meds like Insulin require refrigeration have an insulated waterproof bag or cooler with ice or ice packs ready to go. A product called FRIO can help with no refrigeration or ice required. All you do is add water and it keeps internal temperatures at 70 degrees. Highly recommended is a watertight bag as well. Also always make sure you have enough medication for at least 3 weeks or more. Certain meds like Prednisone or Heart Meds must be given daily or things can get really, really bad very quickly.
Don’t let cats and dogs roam during or after a storm- There are downed power lines that can electrocute them, displaced wild animals (in Florida we have Gators & Burmese Pythons) sharp objects pets can step on, dangerous winds and objects that are loose and can fall on your pet.
Identification- GPS collars for pets are ideal combined with microchips and collar ids. I have even seen in a storm a dog with a waterproof marker indicating his parents address and telephone. The more i.d. your pet has the better chance you have of finding them if they get lost.
Flashlights – Puplight is worn on your dog's neck or collar and great to project a path, while a headlamp for yourself is important so you can remain hands-free. If you live in a building and lose power and have to carry your senior pet down a dark stairwell your hands-free headlamp can be your savior.
Pet First Aid Kit- Always have a pet first aid kit on hand for an emergency that includes; Bandages, Medical Tape, Hydrogen Peroxide for wounds or to induce vomiting, Pedialyte for dehydration or you can make your own with salt and sugar, Scissors, Benadryl for allergies, Some Honey or Dextrose for diabetic pets, a Thermometer for obvious reasons, Dish soap to remove external toxins, Phone number for the animal poison control hotline, A blanket to keep a pet warm or restrain them if they are injured and, treats to keep them calm and distracted if they are injured.
Shelter Plans – If you have knowledge of an impending disaster like a Hurricane many human shelters do not allow pets but there are some that do. Plan ahead and know your options. Your veterinarian might board in an emergency or your local daycare. If you decide to travel avoid booking your pet in the cargo hold of a plane and try to book them in-cabin and don’t forget book pet-friendly accommodations if needed.
NOTE: Emotional Support Animals are permitted in the cabin on certain airlines. Check the requirements first. Service Dogs are also permitted in-cabin on airlines but you must also check the availability and requirements first.
Pet First Aid- It’s a simple course offered by many local organizations and will teach you what to do for, Hypothermia, Heatstroke, Loss of Consciousness, Water Inhalation and much more. Imagine being empowered to expel a foreign object that is restricting breathing or performing CPR on an unconscious pet. Always have CBD OIL on hand to keep your pets calm and anxiety-free.
Emergency Vet Care- Always check who will be opened during a potential storm or who stays open during a natural disaster in the event an emergency arises.
Food – Make sure you have options for non-perishable food for your pets and if food must be refrigerated, plan for that with a cooler. Always have enough food for 3 weeks and preferably 1 month in case of power outages or natural disasters.
Communication- In the event of you losing power have a battery-operated TV or Radio on hand to keep you abreast of emergency procedures. There are also battery-operated cellphone chargers available that are a must.
Water-With an impending natural disaster and loss of power one gallon per day per human is recommended. Measure the amount your pet drinks a day normally and add about 50% to that number so you have enough water for a sustained period for your pets.