Hurricane season is upon us again and being prepared is vitally important.
We all know this, but sometimes we let it slip or don't find time to "get ready". It's so easy to forget our fuzzy friends in this preparation, but we don't want to make that mistake. Let's talk about some tips to help our pet preparedness situation.
Keep Your Pets' Vaccines Up-to-date
In case of an evacuation, the shelter decides if they will take your pet - not you or your vet. Keeping them fully vaccinated will prevent most shelter
problems. If you have a pet that cannot be vaccinated due to a medical condition, have your vet write you a letter stating why. Additionally, in a flood event, certain diseases like leptospirosis can become an epidemic because of environmental conditions. But many of these diseases have vaccinations for prevention.
Keep Your Medications Stocked
Our clinic has been closed for extended periods of time due to storms on more than one occasion. Records might not be available because of closure. Emergency trips without chronic or travel medications can be deadly. Try to always have a couple of weeks of medication available at all times.
Having a Supply of Food and Clean Water Is Also Very Important
Maybe your pet requires prescription food - you don't want to run out. In the event of a catastrophe, scrambling to get a supply of food upon an evacuation can be very time-consuming. And don't forget the bowls!
Make Sure Your Pet Can Be Identified
Have some good photos on your phone. Collars with a name and contact number can be very helpful, but collars can be lost. Microchipping is the best option. Microchips don't get lost and always work. I've seen many dogs reunited with their owners due to microchips. Additionally, make sure all the collar and microchip contact information is up-to-date.
Finally, Have a Plan that You Have Thought Out
For example, if you have to leave right now - Do you have enough carriers that work, with bowls for each pet? Are medications easy to grab? Are leashes present? Are records easy to get? Remember emergencies occur all the time. Just about all of us live downwind of some chemical plant.
Remember the fires that occurred near the Battleship of Texas? You won't have time to prepare if the fire department is knocking on your door.