Emergency Preparedness with Pets


17-PP-1342-SOCIAL-Pets Disasters and emergencies are usually surprises, leaving us with little time to prepare for the worst. Sometimes these situations may require us to evacuate our homes for a few hours, days, or even permanently. In a time of emergency, health is our most important asset, and the same can be said for our pets. For preparedness, keeping an evacuation pack, or “evac pack” on hand is a proactive way to keep pets healthy and safe in case of emergency.

An evacuation kit will not only come in handy during times of crisis, but it can also be used for smaller emergencies, provided items are replaced when used. To create an evacuation pack for pets, start by obtaining a large tote bin that will hold everything you need. With a permanent marker, write “EVACUATION PACK” on the top and sides of the bin to clearly label it, and keep it in a place that is easy to access at all times.

Pet Evacuation Pack Contents

  • Extra leash and collar with ID tag – 1 set per pet
  • Food and water (dehydrated pet food and at least 2 gallons of water; be sure to replace these every 3 months)
  • Food, treats, and water dishes
  • Harness and muzzle
  • Hot/cold compress pack
  • Nail clippers, flea comb, and brush
  • Flea and tick repellant
  • Blankets, towels, and toys for comfort
  • Flashlight and batteries
  • Disposable turkey pans (to use for makeshift cat litter pans that can be created with dirt and leaves if necessary)
  • Pet life jacket

Pet first aid kit, including:

  • Bandages, tape, and gauze wraps
  • Tweezers and tick removal tool
  • Scissors
  • Eye wash
  • Ear wash
  • Gloves
  • Pain reliever

All medical records in a waterproof, sealed envelope, including:

  • Vaccination records
  • Name and phone number of veterinarian and secondary veterinarian
  • Pet insurance information
  • Animal shelter and boarding facility phone numbers
  • Microchip numbers
  • List of pet’s personal medical needs and physical description of pet
  • A two week supply of medication (if needed)
  • Tranquilizers (if needed with fearful pets)
  • Pet first aid booklet
  • Pet CPR instructions
  • Recent photographs of pet (in case pet goes missing)
  • Name, age, and birthdate of pet (or estimated birth date)
  • Emergency contact name and phone number

This list might seem overwhelming, but I am able to fit all of the items above in a single tote, and you can too!  Here’s what mine looks like:

Heavy items, like water and pet carriers, can be stored right next to the evacuation pack.

In times of emergency, it is important to make sure our furry friends are clean and safe. I have five pets and most of them have special needs.  What items would you include in your evac kit?  Leave a comment below to share your suggestions.


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