According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA), 2022 will have above-average Atlantic hurricane activity. Should you find yourself in the midst of a hurricane warning, will your pets have proper provisions for an evacuation or sheltering in place for at least two weeks? Let’s review how to include pets in a hurricane preparedness plan.
Know Your Area. Are you in an evacuation zone? You can check your Florida zone here. According to the Federal Drug and Food Administration, the number one instruction for pet owners is, “bring your pets with you when you evacuate.” If you are to evacuate, know in advance which shelters take pets. Try to contact them before leaving as some shelters require advanced notice. Another option is to take them to a pet-friendly hotel. (The CDC has provided numbers to call for pet-friendly hotels here.)
Include Extra Water for Your Pet(s). Our pets need one ounce of water per pound of body weight per day. Prepare for 1-2 week’s supply of food and water for your pets. Don’t forget the bowls!
Prepare a First Aid Kit for Your Pet. Animals are as likely to get injured in a natural disaster as you are. Refer to our blog about pet first aid which includes a checklist of items for your kit. Remember to store 1-2 week’s worth of any medication your pet may require.
Keep Crates and Carriers Accessible. Dog crates, leashes, and cat carriers should be kept near the door for evacuation, or internally for sheltering in place. All pets should have collars with updated information, as well as microchips. If you are sheltering in place, keep your animals confined at all times.
Keep Vaccination Records in a Water-Proof Container. Include medical records and photos of your pets.
Have Waste Products Ready. Disposable litter boxes and litter, wee wee pads, newspaper, pooh bags, and cleaning products are all necessities for any location.
Plan Their Entertainment. Pets can get bored being cooped up. Have plenty of treats and toys, favorite blankets and bedding. Keep your pet’s comfort in mind.
Place Updated Emergency Stickers on Outside Windows. Let emergency evacuation teams know how many pets are in your home. Order your free Pet Safety Pack from ASPCA here.
CDC Preparing for a Hurricane or Tropical Storm
How to Protect Your House from a Hurricane by Electric Generators Direct
Hurricane Preparedness for Dog Owners by the American Kennel Club
PetMD Pet Hurricane Checklist