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September is National Disaster Preparedness Month

Sep 09, 2015

Hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, flash floods…

And, as a pet owner, how prepared are you to care for your furry family members during a disaster? 

Many times natural disasters strike suddenly without giving pet owners much time to consider all their pets’ needs before having to evacuate or relocate. One of the best ways you can keep your pets safe is to have an evacuation kit for your pet ready to go.   

What does an animal evacuation kit include?

Your evacuation kit should include all your pets’ necessities including the following, but not limited to:

  • Pet first-aid kit
  • 2 weeks worth of pop-top can food (if your pet prefers dry food, be sure to replace the food every 2~3 months)
  • 2 weeks worth of bottled water (replace every 2~3 months)
  • Food and water bowls
  • Towels and blankets
  • Toys and treats (replace treats every 2~3 months)
  • Extra collars, leash, and identification tags
  • Extra garbage bags and Ziploc bags
  • Dish soap
  • Disinfectant
  • Any medication your pet is currently taking
  • Extra litter (for cat owners!)

Along with these necessities, you will also want to include important information in case your pet is missing or injured. All information should be stored in a Ziploc bag or waterproof containers.

  • Recent photographs of your pet
  • Vaccination records and other medical records
  • Pet insurance policy information
  • Pet registration, adoption, microchip information to help identify your pet and proof of ownership
  • Your contact information and any other secondary caretakers’ contact information
  • Your veterinarian’s contact information
  • List of nearby 24-hour emergency animal hospitals
  • List of nearby pet-friendly hotels and pet boarding facilities
  • List of nearby animal shelters (in case your pet is lost)

Your evacuation kit should be stored in a cool, dry place, and easy to carry. Additionally, make sure that everyone in your household knows where the evacuation kit is located.

What if I’m not home during an emergency situation?


We can’t always be there for our pets in an emergency and natural disasters don’t follow our 9 to 5 schedule. In these cases, having an emergency pet rescue sticker or window decal on your home’s front window or door will be helpful. These signs will alert any emergency service members or neighbors to rescue your pets.

Emergency pet rescue stickers should include the number of pets (e.g. 1 dog, 2 cats, etc.) and your contact information. You may also want to include your pet’s registration or microchip identification numbers if your pets do not wear their collars inside the home. There are a variety of emergency pet rescue stickers you can purchase online. Or you can stop by The COVE and pick up one for free!*

Help promote National Disaster Preparedness Month by sharing this post with friends and family!

For additional information on disaster preparedness and helpful checklists, download AVMA’s Saving the Whole Family PDF. 

 And as a reminder, should your pets become ill or injured during a disaster, The COVE is open 24/7 for emergencies.


*While supplies last.

Category: Pet Health Tips