The latest prediction for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 through November 30, calls for 14-23 named storms, half of which could become hurricanes! If you own pets, the likelihood that you and your animals will survive a natural disaster depends largely on being prepared to vacate at a moment’s notice. The American Kennel Club offers the following tips on how to prepare for an evacuation:
- Don’t leave your pet at home.
Most evacuations last only a few days but there are times that you may not be able to return to your home quickly. The safest place for your pets is with YOU! Be prepared to take your pets with you in an evacuation by having a sturdy, safe, comfortable crate or carrier ready for transporting.
- Coordinate shelter.
Animal-related businesses often offer shelter for people, family members and animals in the event of an emergency. If you belong to a dog club, contact members outside the affected area by telephone or email to coordinate shelter and transportation for those in need.
- Be prepared.
Keep copies of your dog license, vaccination documents and health records in a clean plastic bag or waterproof container. Ask your vet to supply you with a copy of all records of your pets so that you can maintain these records at your home.
- Keep a bag packed.
Your pet should wear a collar with its rabies tag and identification at all tines. Pack a backup leash, collar and ID tag. The AKC also recommends a permanent identification, such as microchip along with enrollment in a pet recovery service. Visit www.akccar.org to learn more about microchips. Keep packed bag handy. Include the following items: Your pet’s health records and medications, food and water bowls, food for one week, a gallon of spring water, a portable kennel/crate, pet bedding and a leash.
Contributed by Millie