If conditions during a storm are not safe for you, then they’re not safe for your pets either. Include your pets in your hurricane plan. Keep in mind:
- Service animals are the ONLY pets allowed at most public shelters.
- Most motels and hotels will allow smaller pets (cats, small dogs, etc.) for an additional fee or deposit but be sure to ask before you go.
- If you evacuate to a shelter, make arrangements early to board your pet at a kennel or boarding service outside hurricane evacuation zones. Don’t wait until the last minute. Space will be limited, and standard boarding fees will apply.
- Regardless of where you evacuate, be sure your pet is clearly identified with a current license and rabies tag on their collar. You may consider having your pet micro-chipped.
- Try to keep your schedule as normal as possible.
- Make sure their shots are up to date. You may need proof of vaccinations.
- Pet stores can help you find shelter for exotic pets.
Put together a Supply Kit including:
- A pet carrier or collapsible cage (appropriate for your pet)
- Pet food, bottled water and any medications, enough for at least one week (don’t forget bowls, a manual can opener and treats)
- Proof of up-to-date vaccinations
- Current photo of you with your pet (as proof of ownership)
- Cat litter, liners and pan
- Newspaper and paper towels for clean up
- Small trash bags for waste
- Muzzle (if necessary)
- Toys and other comfort items
- First aid kit
- Mark all your pets’ belongings with a water-proof marker.
After the storm, The Humane Society and other animal services can help you find a lost pet or locate the owner of a pet you find. Watch your pet carefully outdoors. Familiar scents and landmarks may change, and your pet could easily get confused. Downed power lines, contaminated food and water are also real dangers. Remember, pets are part of the family; don’t put them at risk. Check your county map in this guide for a list of pet friendly shelters.