Mar 15, 2011

Are you ready in case of an emergency?


Are you ready in case of an emergency? What happens if Mother Nature hits and you have to leave? Or if a something like a gas leak, an extended power outage, or a nuclear leak hits, do you have a plan? No matter where you live it is always best to have a plan and know what to do in an emergency.

Here is a list of things you should have on hand in case you have to leave. Or in case, as here in California we have an earthquake, you should have at least seven days of supplies and food for you and your pets. Given recent events around the country, some of my sources even suggest a two to three week supply.

Make sure your dog has a collar and an identification tag that has their name, your name and phone number on it. Include the phone number of a relative who is out-of-state, who can be contacted in case your phone line is out. Consider having your pet permanently identified with a tattoo or microchip. If your pet becomes lost, periodically check with your out-of-state relative in case they get any news from authorities who may have found your pet. If your pet is lost, post pictures and/or flyers and constantly check with all shelters within a twenty mile radius.

Make sure to keep your gas tank at least half-full and remember to evacuate early and take your pets with you. If you have larger animals, make sure your trailer is in good condition and stocked with their appropriate food needs. After a rainstorm, make sure to empty all containers where water may have collected, so they don’t become stagnant and become a breeding place for mosquitoes or any bacteria or protozoa that could cause your pet to become ill.


Disaster Preparedness List

As part of your overall family disaster plan, you should also include a disaster kit for your animals. Here is a list of what your kit should include:
Leashes for all the family pets that can be leashed
A health record for your pet, which should include:
a) Your pet’s vaccination history
b) Your vet’s phone number and address
c) Any other pertinent information on any medical problems your pet may have
d) Sufficient medications for your pet for at least a week, and make sure to rotate the medicine you use for them so it doesn’t expire from age.
e) Depending on how long you will be gone, you may also consider getting a prescription for additional medicines, just in case you have to go to another town and cannot get to your vet’s office.
You should also have enough food and water for seven days for your animals.
Be sure to have a gallon of water per day for a medium-sized dog, and about a quart per day for small dogs.
Food should be stored in watertight containers and should be rotated to keep it fresh.
Make sure that the carriers for your animals are readily accessible.
You should have recent photographs of all your pets in the kit. This helps shelters identify them if they become lost and happen to be picked up by animal control.
Include a list of friends, veterinarians and kennels where your pets can stay during a disaster.
Pack their first aid kit, blankets, towels, muzzles for an emergency, and a manual can opener.
Food and water bowls for your pets.
A pooper scooper and plastic bags for pet waste
A battery-operated radio, in case of a power outage, or you are somewhere without electricity.
Batteries
Gloves: rubber and leather work gloves
Rope, waterproof nylon in 12 foot lengths
Bungee cords
Candles
Pet wipes
Liquid soap
Paper filter masks
Paper cups and plates
Disposable camera
Candles and matches in a zip-lock bag
Box of zip-lock bags
Tape, moving tape, electrical tape: in case you have to make posters
Permanent marker
Silver thermal blanket (you can get at a camping store)
Kaopectate
Roll of plastic for water barrier, in case of sleeping on ground
I even have a battery powered television/radio for getting emergency information.
All of the above items should be stored in a plastic tub, somewhere near your front door.

Two Minute Pet Tip © 2010 Wendy Nan Rees

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Wendy Nan Rees uses her 25 years of expertise to answer pet health questions and offer expert advice for pet lovers.

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