Pet Blog

Emergency preparedness kits should include pet supplies

Posted September 9, 2014 10:36 a.m. EDT
Updated September 10, 2014 7:33 a.m. EDT

Pets and natural disasters

— Families that own pets schedule their lives differently, and that's especially true when it comes to planning for disasters like hurricanes, snow storms or floods.

According to the North Carolina Veterinary Medical Association, having a pet survival kit is critical in case of emergency. The kit should be stored as close to the exit of a home as possible, and it should include the following:

  • Three to seven days of canned or dry pet food
  • Pet feeding dishes
  • Disposable garbage bags for waste clean up
  • Photocopies of medical records and a waterproof container with a two-week supply of any medicine your pet needs
  • At least seven days of bottled water for each person and pet
  • Blanket or bedding
  • Recent photos of your pet in case you need to make lost posters
  • Extra leashes, toys and chew toys

Microchips are also key in helping pet owners make it through natural disasters. Animal shelters and veterinarians routinely look for chips in order to return lost pets quickly to their owners.

With larger animals, such as horses, it can often be more difficult. Do not wait until the last minute to transport a horse. It is best to do this several days in advance. Plan in advance, and have a halter and lead rope for each horse, and hang it outside their stall.

Keep extra feed buckets at the barn, which can be sent with the horse when evacuated. Stockpile three or more days of food and hay, medications, and extra water in containers. Also, keep extra bedding, pitchforks and shovels on hand.

Plan ahead of time where horses will be taken and what volunteers will be assisting. Compile a portable first aid kit and keep it with a preparedness kit.

"In the event of a natural disaster, it is important to always be prepared when it comes to protecting your family and pets," Dr. Shannon Foy, president of the North Carolina Veterinary Medical Association, said. "You can go through an evacuation plan with your family while also maintaining an updated survival kit to keep your furry family members safe during this stressful time."