In recent months, we have seen many disasters unfold both in the US and abroad and sadly, pets, as well as humans, have endured much suffering. To help ease future misery, The Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards (PETS) Act (S 2548 and HR 3858) would require that local and state governments develop disaster plans for animals.
As many of us know, pets are part of the family and absolutely no pet should be left behind. During Hurricane Katrina, many people remained in dangerous situations because they would not leave their animal friends. Please call your federal lawmakers at 202-224-3121 and ask them to support the PETS Act.
Before disaster ever strikes, it is important for all family members to prepare. In most cases your animal’s best protection is to be with you. Taking your pet does require special planning and following are some guidelines that The National Humane Education Society (NHES) recommends:
1. Keep your pet’s vaccinations and medical records up-to-date
2. Make sure your pet wears a comfortable collar with the proper identifi- cation, license and rabies tag. Also, consider a microchip or tattoo as additional identification insurance.
3. Locate safe places for your pets BEFORE disaster strikes. Many emergency shelters for humans do not allow pets due to public health and safety reasons. If you must leave your home, here are some resources to contact:
• Boarding Kennels
• Veterinary Hospitals
• Hotel/Motels (that will allow pets)
• Animal Shelters (consider only as a last resort)
Disaster supplies to prepare:
• Portable kennel carrier or crate for each pet that you own. (Carriers should be large enough for animal to stand up and turn around in)
• Food/water bowls
• Pet food and water
• Litter and litter box
• Pet’s medications
• First aid kit
• Pet’s medical records
• Cloth towels/paper towels
• Plastic bags for waste
• Leaving your pet behind will place your animal at greater risk for injury or loss, so please make every effort to take your pet with you. If there is absolutely no alternative and you must leave your pet, please visit our website at www.nhes.org.
NHES hopes that you and your family will never experience a real disaster scenario, but we all must be aware and plan ahead for the possibility. In doing so, remember EACH member of your family. Our four-legged, feathered and finned friends are totally dependent on us for their safety.
Compliments of The National Humane Education Society www.nhes.org