Our #pets depend on us for their well being and survival; and during times of potential emergencies or disasters, we need to be especially diligent and prepared. Making plans and taking measures ahead of the threat is essential and will help keep our pets #safe. Last minute decisions create the possibility of us be unprepared to do what is best for our pets and ourselves.
I read in a posting from the ASPCA that "if it isn't safe for us, then it isn't safe for our pets." It went on to say that if we are not going to stay because it is too risky or unsafe for us [humans] to do so, then we must NOT leave our beloved pets behind either.
The ASPCA also gives us some steps that we are able to take BEFORE the impending disaster.
First, they recommend that we have a sticker or notice on our front door that notifies rescue workers that we have pets. We need to list how many pets and what type(s) of pets we have. If we do leave or evacuate prior to their arrival, we need to mark across it "Evacuated." This lets the emergency workers know that they do not need to look for them.
Second, we need to know where we will seek a "safe haven" in our homes (safe room, high spots, etc.) and/or at facilities that accept pets. This is very important because not all places allow us to bring our pets with us. The bottom line - "DO NOT LEAVE OUR PETS BEHIND." Plan ahead. Know where we ae going.
Third, if we work or may be away from our home when the storm hits, we need to have someone who is willing to go and get our pets. They need to have a key, access into our home, knowledge about our pets, and the willingness to be responsible for our pets while we are not present. This is also important in the event that we are injured or unable to care for our furry family members in critical situations.
Fourth, put together a supply bag that prepares us for the worse. Include extra collars, extra leashes, tags (get our pets microchipped ahead of time for better identification and re-unification), food for a week, water, medications, first aid kit, flashlight, chew or comfort toys, and information about our veterinarian and any medical conditions.
Fifth, install the ASPCA app on our mobile devices. This can provide important information throughout the crisis or emergency situation.
It is very important to bring our pets inside as soon as we are aware that the critical event is going to occur. Earlier is better than later. We don't want them running or wandering off when becoming scared.
As I begin planning for the possibility of the hurricane that is coming up the coastline and hitting our state, I am reminded of the Girl Scout motto that I learned many years ago as a youngster - "Be prepared!" Our families which include our loving pets depend on us. Please stay safe.