September is National Preparedness Month. Check out these great tips from Dr. Jim Lowe!

In recognition of National Preparedness Month, Tomlyn® reminds you to include your four-legged family members in your emergency plan-of-action

  1.  Food
  1. Have a 3-5 day supply of your pet’s regular diet stored in a re-sealable container.  During periods of emergency, familiarity is always comforting and will provide some assurances that your pet will maintain an adequate caloric intake.
  2. Consider pre-measuring portions in re-sealable bags should others be charged with feeding.  Write specific feeding instructions on these containers.
  3. Include a high-calorie supplement for use should feed intake be less than normal.

 

  1. Water
  1. Have plastic containers of your pet’s normal water available for transport.  If stressed, an unfamiliar water source may be confusing to your pet and affect water consumption.  Do not assume that an alternative source of water, if available, will be satisfactory.

 

  1. Crate/Carrier
  1. Assure that your pet’s normal carrier is in good working order.  Oftentimes, fasteners work loose or are lost all together.  Doors may have been wired in place or the carrier may need a good cleaning.  You may have to keep your companion in this carrier for a prolonged period of time and in close proximity to other evacuated pets, so assure its security to protect him.
  2. Make sure to place a familiar blanket or toy in the crate.  Again, familiarity brings comfort.
  3. For larger dogs, have an extra leash, harness, and collar ready and easily accessible.

 

  1. Medications
  1.  Have a 3-5 day supply of your pet’s medications ready for transport so as not to interrupt the current regimen.
  2. Consider taping a list of these medications with administration instructions to the crate.  Make these instructions as specific as possible.  Do not assume you will be the one administering them.
  3. Discuss with your veterinarian products available to relieve stress and anxiety.

 

  1. Veterinary Information
  1.  Tape your veterinarian’s contact information to the crate.
  2.  Include any allergies and/or personality traits that may be of importance should others be caring for your pet short term (i.e. “aggressive towards other dogs”, “does not like loud noises”, “scared of cars”, etc).

While no one likes to think about emergencies, it is important to be ready to react swiftly and efficiently so as not to compound an unfortunate situation.   As caretakers to our four-legged companions, responsibility in any and all situations is on us.