Every hurricane season we talk about hurricane preparedness. However, humans aren't the only ones that need to be prepared. Pet owners should have an emergency plan that includes the safety of their animals, and always be informed about the potential for evacuation in their area. Dr. Melissa Webster from Tampa Veterinary Hospital is here to share tips to keep your pets safe:
What can we do to prepare before the storm?
-Pet owners need to have a plan of action for their pets.
-Don't leave your pet alone during a storm.
-If you evacuate, you have no idea how long you'll be gone, so it's not safe to leave your pets alone.
-Microchip your pet
-Make sure identification tags are up-to-date and securely fastened to your pet's collar
-Make sure that your pet has been vaccinated within the past 12 months
-Plan out where you and your pet will go. Red Cross shelters do not accept pets
-Photograph each of your pets and include these with important papers. A picture of you and your pet together will help you document ownership and allow others to assist you in identifying your pet.
Q When a hurricane threatens, which essential supplies should we have ready in advance to be prepared in the event of a storm?
Before you find yourself in an emergency situation, consider packing a "pet survival" kit which could be easily deployed if disaster hits. Your pet emergency preparedness kit should include:
-Proper ID collar, rabies tag and microchip information
- Medications 2 week supply, medical records, First Aid kit.
- Sturdy leashes, harnesses, and/or carriers to transport pets safely and ensure that your animals can't escape.
- Current photos of your pets in case they get lost.
- Food 2 week supply, drinkable water, bowls, cat litter/pan, and manual can opener.
- Information on feeding schedules, medical conditions, behavior problems, and the name and number of your veterinarian in case you have to foster or board your pets.
- Pet bed or toys if easily transportable.
Q: If you do go to a pet shelter, what is the animal required to have?
-Proper ID collar, rabies tag and microchip info
-Proper ID on all belongings
-Carrier or cage
-Ample food supply-2 weeks
-Any necessary medications- 2 week supply
-Specific care instructions and medial records
-Newspapers, plastic trash bags for handling waste and/or kitty litter
-Toys for comfort, first aid kit, a manual can opener, cat litter, liners and a pan, muzzle if necessary, t-shirt with your scent on it
Q: What should be included in a **First Aid Kit? Dr. Webster to make kit
• Bandage materials - cotton, gauze, gauze pads, vet-wrap, telfa pads, white cloth tape
• Hydrogen peroxide
• Anti-bacterial ointment/cream
• Scissors and Tweezers
• Any needed medications
• Veterinarian's phone number
• Nearest emergency clinic phone number
• Water-proof container to hold these items
Q What cautions do we have to take after the storm?
-Make sure your pets aren't allowed to run loose after a storm. Familiar landmarks and smells might be displaced by the storm
-Keep your dogs on a leash and your cats inside
-Be ready for any behavioral problems that may develop as a result of the stress they experience.
-If you are without power be extremely carefully using candles or oil lamps
-If you have lost your pet during a storm visit Animals Services to help location your pet
Q Can you share shelters in the Area that allow pets? put up on screen
The Pet Friendly Shelters are:
Burnett Middle School
1010 N. Kingsway Road <http://g.co/maps/rk6pe>
Seffner, FL 33584 <http://g.co/maps/rk6pe>
Sgt. Smith Middle School
14303 Citrus Pointe Drive <http://g.co/maps/k7ets>
Tampa, FL 33625 <http://g.co/maps/k7ets>
Bartels Middle School
9020 Imperial Oak Blvd. <http://g.co/maps/vkwy4>
Tampa, FL 33647 <http://g.co/maps/vkwy4>
Shields Middle School
15732 Beth Shields Way <http://g.co/maps/wewbx>
Ruskin, FL 33573
If you pet has been hurt call Blue Pearl Emergency Hospital:
More Info: www.tampaVet.com
200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606
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