Three things often happen to people during emergencies, that’s (1) freezing, (2) panicking, and (3) getting an adrenaline rush. Your mind would be all over the place, preventing you from thinking and deciding coherently. So what should you do when you get caught in such situations?
Grab your emergency supply kit. Get your loved ones. Take your pet with y—wait, WHAT PET?
This is one of the heartbreaking scenarios in an emergency or natural disaster: pets getting left behind. So to serve as a reminder that pets are family and you should never exclude your beloved furry companions in your emergency plans, June has been declared the National Pet Preparedness Month.
Moreover, the PETS Act or the Pet Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act was signed into law on October 6, 2006, directly following the disastrous Hurricane Katrina. The PETS Act requires pet owners to include their four-legged friends in their emergency or disaster preparedness plans. During the onslaught of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, households unwillingly abandoned thousands of pets because, at the time, it was not a prerequisite to incorporate them during evacuations.
But what are the things you should do to keep your pets safe during natural calamities? We will talk about them in this article.
IDing a pet is one of the most overlooked pet parent responsibilities. This task is taken for granted not until the furry companion gets lost or stolen. Always keep an updated picture of your fur baby in your wallet or phone. Attach an ID tag on your pet's leash containing your latest contact details. Or better yet, choose a permanent ID solution like putting a microchip in them. Ensure that your pet's identification is updated to save you from the heartbreak of losing a pet.
Pet Emergency Kit
Prepare a separate kit for your animal companion that contains all the essentials in case an emergency or disaster occurs. The kit should include the following according to Centers Disease Control and Prevention:
- Photocopy of your pet's veterinary records
- Photocopy of your pet’s registration information
- A recent picture of your pet
- A copy of your pet's personal information, including their sex, breed, weight, and color
- Two-week supplies of food, water, and medication
- Spill-proof water and food dishes
- Printed feeding and medication instructions
- Extra harness and leash
- Litter box and litter for cats
- Pet carrier with bedding
- Pet first aid kit
- Your pet's favorite toy to help lessen their anxiety and stress
- Plastic bags, paper towels, and poop scooper
Pack all of these inside a waterproof bag or container. Put the bag in a secured place in your house where you can quickly get it.
Develop a Pet Evacuation Plan
Prior to the PETS Act, pet owners were forced to abandon their pets because otherwise, the authorities wouldn’t rescue them during a natural disaster. Fortunately, this is not the case anymore. As a pet parent, you must be prepared to evacuate your fur babies and keep them safe when a disaster or an emergency happens.
Search in advance where your pet could stay temporarily. Take note that some local shelters don't allow pets, except for service animals. Besides pet shelters, you can also stay in pet-friendly accommodations to avoid being separated from your pet. You must also train your fur babies to be in their carriers so they won’t feel uncomfortable staying in them during emergencies.
Prepare for Recovery
After the disaster or emergency subsides, expect your pet to be disoriented or confused because of the changes in its surroundings. They've been in the pet shelter for quite some time, and you should help them adjust. But first, make sure that your house is free from debris or hazardous materials caused by natural disasters, such as flash floods or earthquakes.
Be extra patient with them as they recover and monitor their progress closely. This is the time your pets needed you the most. Comfort them in any way you can. You can do this by cheering them with their favorite blankie, treats, or toys. Or give them extra cuddles to lift their mood and spirits. Also, schedule a visit to the vet to check their current health status since they've been exposed to a different environment.
But did you know that there’s one type of pet that’s exempted from disaster preparedness plans?
Perfect Petzzz: Your Zero-Maintenance Pet
A Perfect Petzzz is the kind of pet you won't have trouble bringing to your local evacuation shelter. You don’t have to microchip it or put an ID tag on its leash. You don't have to create a complicated pet disaster plan with this sleeping fur baby. Most of all, a Perfect Petzzz isn't affected by what’s happening around them, so you don't have to worry about its mental and emotional health.
What is a Perfect Petzzz? It is a life-like artificial pet that behaves and feels like the real thing. This huggable furry thing offers a similar pet ownership experience but with zero hassle and vet expenses. What this baby only does is sleep on its soft bed all day, emitting soft and cute little snores.
Since you can bring this alternative pet anywhere, you can cuddle or play with it to relieve anxiety, homesickness, and other negative emotions while you’re away from home or temporarily staying at an evacuation site.
The Perfect Petzzz comes with a starter care bundle to simulate real-life pet ownership, which includes an adoption certificate, plush bed, collar with tag, and brush. You can buy one on our Amazon store. For questions and concerns, contact us here.