With hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, earthquakes and even severe thunderstorms running rampant last year and causing destruction across the country, it's important to develop a plan to keep your family and pets safe. In a nanosecond, bad weather can be upon you and as the Boy Scouts say: "It's best to be prepared". Don't wait until the last minute because it may be too late to save the people and things that are most precious to you.
Bark Busters wants you to be prepared with these tips for facing a natural disaster:
Pack a To Go Bag
- At all times, it's best to have a family bag and a dog's bag. It should include:
- Collar with ID tags (WaggTagg is perfect!) and sturdy leash
- Two week's supply of pet medication
- Photocopies of health records
- A recent picture of your dog
- Two-week supply of pet food, bottled water and bowls (include can opener)
- First aid supplies including bandages, tape, tweezers and antibacterial ointment
- Secure, covered crate (large enough so your pet can turn around)
- Flashlight and radio with new batteries for each
- Favorite toy or bedding (to reduce stress by having familiar items)
- Cleaning supplies or trash bags for cleanup
Know Your Local Pet Friendly Facilities. Do your local hotels/motels allow pets? Call your local pet shelters and humane societies to see their restrictions and policies in case of emergencies. For instance, some American Red Cross (ARC) shelters cannot accept pets because of health and safety concerns and other considerations. However, most ARC chapters work closely with organizations that set up animal shelters in close proximity to the human shelters during an evacuation. Contact your local ARC chapter to find out what their shelter plan for animals is prior to an evacuation..
Take Your Pets When Possible. We have seen from previous evacuations that many temporary shelters are accepting dogs and many rescues will include dogs. When possible, take your pets with you.
Update Information. Tens of thousands of dogs were displaced in the Houston floods and the Puerto Rico hurricane. They have never been reunited with their owners, because the dogs did not have current contact information. Contact your Bark Buster dog trainer about the WaggTagg which can virtually eliminate this problem. Also, make sure your pet's vaccinations are up-to-date.
Display a decal in your window. Put a decal on the front door of your home or apartment so that emergency responders or neighbors know that you have pets that need to be rescued. If you take your pets with you and time allows, write "EVACUATED" across the stickers so rescue workers don't waste time looking for them.
Don't wait. Too many people think it will never happen to them or that they live in an area that is not prone to disasters. Bark Busters wants to keep both you and your furry friends safe. Enjoy your Spring!