Would you know what to do if you were faced with a disaster? Where would you go with your dog? What would you need to take for the safety and well being of your dog if you needed to leave your house in a hurry? I’ve never been faced with a disaster and had to hurry up and leave – thank God – but it could happen. And with my emergency disaster kit ready to go, I will be prepared if that day should happen to come.
Never, ever leave your dog at your house during an emergency. You may think that you will only be gone a few hours and they will be safe, but that few hours could turn into days or weeks. They will be scared and could get hurt, lost or killed. If it’s not safe for you to be at home, then it is not safe for your pets to be at home either!
Your emergency disaster kit for dogs should be readily accessible and everyone should know where it is and what it is. You should also store your emergency disaster kit for dogs in a sturdy, easy to move container. If you have more than one dog keep that in mind when making your emergency disaster kit, because that means that you may need additional supplies.
Here are the items that you should keep in your emergency disaster kit:
- A one week supply of regular food. Dry food should be stored in an airtight, waterproof container. If you are feeding canned food, buy cans that are small enough for a single serving since refrigeration may be unavailable. If using cans, don’t forget to add a can opener to your emergency disaster kit or buy cans that have a pop-top. You should rotate the stored food every 3 months for freshness.
- A one week supply of bottled water, tap water may be unsafe to drink. The water should be stored in a cool, dark place. You should rotate the bottled water every few months for freshness. Also, it is a good idea to have some extra water available in case you need to wash off your dog and for cleaning bowls.
- Bowls for food and water. Collapsible are great space savers.
- 2 week supply of current medications. This supply needs to be rotated at least every 3 months for freshness.
- Rescue Remedy for Pets may help to calm a nervous dog. Rescue Remedy can help you too!
- Dish soap to wash bowls and your hands after cleaning up after your dog.
- Plastic bags to be used for cleaning up poop.
- Paper towels
- Extra leashes
- Id tags
- Toys and treats. This is will help ease your dog a little so that he is not as nervous.
- If possible, a dog bed or blankets for him to lay on.
- Current picture of your dog, in case he gets lost and you need to make up a lost poster. Also, a picture of you with your dog, in case you need to be able to provide proof of ownership.
- Plastic or collapsible crate. Make sure to get one that is large enough for your dog to move around in.
- Have a list of hotels that will accept dogs and approved boarding kennels. This list should not include hotels or kennels in your general area. Remember not all emergency or Red Cross shelters will accept pets. That’s why this list is very important to have ahead of time. Also, check with your local shelters to see if they offer emergency housing during emergencies.
- Talk to friends or family members outside of your general area that may be willing to take in your pets for some time during an emergency.
- Keep a detailed list of instructions and care, in case you need to drop your dog off at a kennel in a hurry. Write down detailed medication instructions, feeding instructions, behavioral concerns, and your vet’s contact information.
Here are the medical items that you should keep in your emergency disaster kit:
- Pet First Aid: Cats & Dogs book by the American Red Cross
- 3″ x 5″ conforming bandages
- 4″ x 4″ absorbent gauze pads
- 3″ x 1 yard absorbent gauze roll
- Cotton tipped applicators
- Antiseptic wipes
- Antibacterial ointment
- Instant cold pack
- Latex gloves
- You can also buy ready made first aid kits for dogs like this one: Outdoor RX Pet First Aid Kit with Bag.
For a free in case of emergency sticker from the ASPCA go to this website: http://www.aspca.org/about-us/free-aspca-stuff/free-pet-safety-pack.aspx
For more information on preparing for a disaster go to: http://www.ready.gov/caring-animals