I was browsing the ASPCA website and found some good info on general preparedness for your pets in case of emergency. You can find it here: http://www.aspca.org/site/PageServer?pagename=pets_emergency
OR just read on
Please post any other tips you might have!
Step 1 Get a Rescue Alert Sticker
This easy-to-use sticker will let people know that pets are inside your home. Make sure it is visible to rescue workers, and that it includes 1) the types and number of pets in your household; 2) the name of your veterinarian; and 3) your veterinarian's phone number.
To get an emergency pet alert sticker for your home, please fill out our online order form; please allow 6-8 weeks for delivery. Your local pet supply store may also sell similar stickers.
Step 2 Arrange a Safe Haven
Arrange a safe haven for your pets in the event of evacuation. DO NOT LEAVE YOUR PETS BEHIND. If you do, they may be at risk of injury or even worse. Red Cross disaster shelters will not accept pets because of health and safety regulations. So it is imperative that you have determined where you will bring your pets ahead of time:
- Contact your veterinarian for a list of preferred boarding kennels and facilities.
- Ask your local animal shelter if they provide emergency shelter or foster care for pets.
- Identify hotels or motels outside of your immediate area that accept pets.
- Ask friends and relatives outside your immediate area if they would be willing to take in your pet.
Step 3 Emergency Supplies and Traveling Kits
Keep an emergency kit handy for your pets. This kit should contain the following:
- Pet first-aid kit and guide book
- Canned (pop-top) or dry food
- Disposable litter trays (aluminum roasting pans are perfect)
- Litter or paper toweling
- Pet feeding dishes
- Extra leash
- Photocopies of medical records and a waterproof container with a two-week supply of any medicine your pet requires (Remember, food and medications need to be rotated out of your emergency kit—otherwise they may go bad or become useless.)
- Bottled water
- A traveling bag or sturdy carrier, ideally one for each pet
- Blanket (for scooping up a fearful pet)
- Recent photos of your pets (in case you are separated and need to make "Lost" posters)
Step 4 Choose “Designated Caregivers”
This step will take considerable time and thought. When choosing a temporary caregiver, consider someone who lives close to your residence. He or she should be someone who is generally home during the day while you are at work or has easy access to your home. A set of keys should be given to this trusted individual. This may work well with neighbors who have pets of their own—you may even swap responsibilities, depending upon who has accessibility.
When selecting a permanent caregiver, you’ll need to consider other criteria. This is a person to whom you are entrusting the care of your pet in the event that something should happen to you. When selecting this "foster parent," consider people who have met your pet and have successfully cared for animals in the past. Be sure to discuss your expectations at length with a permanent caregiver, so he or she understands the responsibility of caring for your pet.
Additionally, you will want to provide a trust for your pet's financial future. Unlike a will, a trust provides for your pet immediately, and will apply not only if you die, but if you become disabled. You may designate your permanent caregiver as the trustee, or choose a separate person to be the trustee of the funds that you have set aside for your pet's care.
Contact your attorney or the ASPCA at (212) 876-7700, ext. 4554, for more information on trusts, wills, and how much money to set aside for your pet's needs in the event you are unable to care for them.
Step 5 Evacuation Preparation
If you must evacuate your home in a crisis, time is of the essence. To minimize evacuation time, take these simple steps:
- Store an emergency kit and leashes as close to an exit as possible.
- Make sure all pets wear collars and tags with up-to-date identification. Your pet's ID tag should contain his name, telephone number, and any urgent medical needs.
- The ASPCA recommends microchipping your pet as a more permanent form of identification. A microchip is implanted in the animal's shoulder area, and can be read by scanner at most animal shelters.
- Always bring pets indoors at the first sign or warning of a storm or disaster. Pets can become disoriented and wander away from home during a crisis.
Consider your evacuation route and call ahead to make arrangements for boarding your pet outside of the danger zone at the first sign of disaster.
Step 6 Geographic and Climatic Considerations
Do you live in an area that is prone to certain natural catastrophes, such as tornadoes, earthquakes or floods? If so, you should plan accordingly.
- Determine well in advance which rooms offer safe havens. These rooms should be clear of hazards such as windows, flying debris, etc.
- Choose easy-to-clean areas such as utility rooms, bathrooms, and basements as safe zones.
- Access to a supply of fresh water is particularly important. In areas that may lose electricity, fill up bathtubs and sinks ahead of time to ensure that you have access to water during a power outage or other crises.
- In the event of flooding, go to the highest location in your home, or a room that has access to counters or high shelves where your animals can take shelter.