Many of you know what a disaster is. But, do you really know what qualifies as an actual disaster? Disasters include everything from terrorist attacks to traffic accidents, floods to fires. The key to navigating a disaster (with as little loss possible) is to be prepared. Being prepared means having a plan in place for your home, family, business (employment), and your pets.
I know this seems to be common sense, but in a time of crisis simple things can become overlooked.
For pets make sure you have proper identification and that the animal is actually wearing it! Invest in good transport kennels before a disaster hits. Keep a stock pile for extra food and gallons of clean water. If your pets take medication, keep a spare prescription in an emergency kit. If you have a diabetic pet make sure to discuss a pre-disaster plan with your vet at the next appointment.
Never ever evacuate a home or business and leave a pet behind. If you are told to evacuate, leave early and take the animals with you, even if you think you'll be gone just a few hours. It is a good idea to Google in a list of hotels that take animals in your area and two hours outside of your area. Jot down the phone numbers and put them in your wallet. Even if you put the numbers in your phone, keep a copy in your wallet because the disaster could interrupt cell phone service.
In today's world, it is hard to not think about these terrible topics- but it is a reality that we have to live in. We often make plans for ourselves and forget to make a plan for out pets or those we are caring for who are elderly or sick. Take some time today to do this for yourself and others.
Twyla N. Garrett