If you're like most people, you've noticed that natural disasters seem to have increased significantly during the past couple of years. Wildfires, flooding, and tornadoes seem to have become almost commonplace, and you've probably put at least some thought into keeping yourself and your family as safe as possible if a natural disaster should occur in your community. However, you may not have put as much consideration into how you're going to optimize the safety and well-being of your canine companion in the event disaster strikes. Family pets are often lost when these incidents occur, and some are never found. Fortunately, creating an emergency preparedness kit for your dog will cut down on the chances of this happening to you. Besides having enough food and water for your pet for several days, here's what else you should include in the kit:
Hard-Copy Photographs of Your Pet
Having several hard-copy photographs of your pet on hand will be invaluable in the event that your pet gets lost and you need to tack up a few "lost pet" posters. Take clear photos of your dog from several angles and print them out—remember that one of the most common issues in the aftermath of a disaster is the loss of electricity, and you may not be able to use a printer for days or even weeks.
Your Pet's Veterinary Records
Including a copy of your pet's veterinary records helps ensure that you are prepared in the case that your dog becomes ill or injured after the disaster occurs. This will be particularly helpful if it becomes necessary to take your pet to a veterinarian in another community due to your local vet's office being out of commission.
First Aid and Prescription Medication
Don't forget to include first aid items and any prescription medication that your pet may be on. Things to include are flea and tick preventives, puppy pads, anti-itch ointment, and anything specific to any existing conditions your dog may have. Don't forget to include a supply of bags for your dog's waste.
The Address and Contact Information for a Pet-Friendly Hotel
Because emergency evacuation shelters typically only allow service dogs, slip the address and contact information of at least one pet-friendly hotel into your dog's emergency preparedness kit.
Be sure to keep all this stuff together in an easily accessible location so that you can just quickly grab it if circumstances require you to evacuate your property in a hurry. For more information about dog care, reach out to a veterinary hospital.