When you think about preparing for an emergency, we’re sure you and your family are well taken care of. But if you count pets as part of your family, you need a specific plan catered just for four legs.

Pets have their own specific needs, even in times of disaster. And first responders are obligated to help people and may not even have training in animal rescue and handling, which means you need your own pet-friendly action plan in case of emergency. Here are some guidelines to follow to make sure your pets are prepared.

Display Rescue Notifications

Get a Rescue Alert sticker for your home. This will help emergency responders identify the pets you have in your home. Best of all, the rescue alert notification is free from the ASPCA.

Keep Pets Calm

Make sure your pet feels safe during a storm. Prepare a smaller area for pets, such as the bathroom or a covered crate — with all their favorite toys and extra bedding — where they can hide and feel safe. Also, close curtains or shades and play classical music or turn on a white noise machine. For super nervous pups, invest in a ThunderShirt, which offers a calming pressure.

Watch Exits Carefully

If your pet seems nervous during a weather-related disaster at home, be sure to watch entrances and exits. Make sure your skittish pets can’t dash out the door.

Prepare An Evacuation Kit

Prepare an evacuation kit so you have everything you need in a disaster. Some things to include:

  • A pet first-aid kit and guide book (ask your vet what to include)
  • Three to seven days' worth of canned or dry food
  • Litter and disposable litter trays or paper towels
  • Liquid dish soap and disinfectant
  • Disposable garbage bags
  • Non-breakable pet feeding dishes
  • An extra collar or harness, and leash
  • Toys and chew toys
  • Photocopies of medical records and a waterproof container with a two-week supply of medicine
  • Bottled water (at least seven days' worth for each person and pet)
  • A traveling bag, crate or carrier
  • Flashlight and backup batteries

Information provided by BrightNest.com.

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