When preparing for an impending hurricane, it is important to take a moment to review the top safety tips for pets. Leaving your pet out of your hurricane preparedness and evacuation plans can put you, your pet, and first responders at risk.
Some of the most important safety tips include:
It is important to have a smart safety plan you can initiate at a moment’s notice and stick to. This includes preparing enough emergency supplies for at least one week in case you have to evacuate. Changing your plan or your mind at the last moment can lead to unnecessary problems, which may put you and your pet in real danger.
Just because people call it a doggy paddle does not mean that all dogs can swim well. Most pets are not good swimmers. To keep your pet safer, keep him or her in a carrier during transport. If you choose to ride out the storm at home, confine your pet indoors in a safe place or room.
In an emergency, an ID tag on your pet’s collar or a microchip implanted beneath the skin can be a lifesaver. Ideally, you should use both forms of identification since an ID tag can fall off during the chaos.
Some items to include in the pet emergency kit include enough food, water, and medication for at least one week. It should also have a pet first aid kit, pet carrier, comfort items, poop bags, extra leash, photos of your pet for easy identification in case they get lost, and more.
If you are unable to care for your pet or take him or her with you for one reason or another, you need to have a list of safe places to take them before the storm hits. Talk to your relatives, friends, veterinarian, or pet boarding facilities.
In addition to placing this sticker outside your home’s door, you need to keep a card with the same information in your wallet. If you need rescuing, the information in the emergency sticker and card will alert first responders to watch out for any pet trapped in your home.
Hurricanes force wild animals into places they normally would not be. Your pet may encounter these animals which could be carriers of dangerous diseases. Your pet could also develop infections due to bacteria in floodwater and puddles.
Do research ahead of time to find out where all the pet-friendly emergency shelters are and how to get to them quickly. If you don’t find any, it’s important to make other arrangements ahead of time.
You need to follow the hurricane’s progress and stay tuned to breaking news about the storm. If the authorities issue an evacuation warning, you need to do so immediately. Do not leave your pets behind, tethering them somewhere to prevent them from running off. This is very dangerous for the pet’s safety.
Whether you choose to ride out the storm at home or need to evacuate, try your best to stay calm to prevent your pet from panicking. You may be experiencing a chaotic time, but your pet is likely also experiencing a sense of panic and chaos as well.
For more hurricane safety tips for your pet, call us at Animal Hospital of Padre Island in Corpus Christi, Texas at 361-949-8200 with any questions or to schedule an appointment.