Does your bushfire or flood plan include how you’ll deal with your pets? US agency FEMA has a detailed guide on taking care of your pets during a disaster.
Photo by Craig ONeal
The previously mentioned 72-Hour Kit lists basic items you’ll need for your pet like food and water, but FEMA also suggests a pet carrier and some way of collecting and cleaning up animal waste. It’s not pretty to think about, but shelters or hotels don’t always have places for animals to eliminate.
The item I hadn’t considered (but will add to my kit) is a picture of you and the pet:
A picture of you and your pet together. If you become separated from your pet during an emergency, a picture of you and your pet together will help you document ownership and allow others to assist you in identifying your pet. Include detailed information about species, breed, age, sex, colour and distinguishing characteristics.
Emergency worker’s can’t ask an animal whom they belong to, so a picture helps reunite dogs with their owners. Animals of the same breed look identical to everyone but their owner, so the picture helps. We’ve suggested a similar tip to reunite lost children with their guardians.
Check the link on other things you can do to as a responsible pet owner to prepare for an emergency.
Caring for Animals [Ready.gov]