Are you prepared for an emergency? According to a recent Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) survey has shown that less than 40% of Americans have developed an emergency plan for their home. This is despite the fact that about 80% of Americans live in areas that have been affected by a weather-related disaster.
What’s even more interesting is that even less people actually practice what they would do in the event of an emergency. Do you know what you should do if your home is affected by an extreme force of nature?
While disaster preparedness is not always at the top of everyone’s priorities, it is absolutely something that everyone should be at least thinking about. And if you have a family or pets, it’s an absolute necessity to practice.
How to Prepare for Possible Disasters
In order for you to prepare for a possible disaster, you have to first know what is possible in your area. Learn or research the types of natural disasters that have already happened in your area.
Obviously, if you’re landlocked you won’t have to worry much about hurricanes, though even the rains that a hurricane drops can lead to flooding.
So, the first step is arming yourself with knowledge. The next step is to create a plan.
Prepare by pretending you are in a real-life scenario where a disaster is headed your way. Make a real plan. You need to think of people you can rely on if you cannot get back home. Think of routes you would take if you were trying to evacuate the area. Where would you go? Always make sure your arrangements are realistic.
Once you play through certain scenarios in your mind, you can move on to actually acting on your plan. And when your plan involves other people and pets, you’ll need to pack.
What You Need in a Pet Disaster Kit
A pet disaster kit is not much different from a disaster kit you might pack for yourself. Everyone needs the basics but planning these things in advance can make a disaster a little less disastrous.
For a full checklist you can look at the Center For Disease Control’s website
but here are the basics of what you will need to make sure you’re keeping your pet safe in the event of an emergency.
Bringing your pet with you (and you should always bring your pet in the event of an emergency) means you’ll have to make sure they are comfortable.
Your pet will need food and water. It is recommended that you bring a two-week supply of food and water for your pet. You’ll also want to make sure that it is packed in a waterproof container. If your pet’s dry food gets wet, you won’t be able to make sure it’s safe to consume.
You also need to make sure you have a supply of any medications or preventative products that your give to your pet. Think things like heartworm, flea or tick medications.
You also will want to have instructions printed about how these products should be used. If you need to leave your pet with someone else, you’ll want to make sure they are feeding and giving medications in the proper amounts.
A last note is to also pack any accessories you’ll need like a can opener or collapsible food bowl.
Your pet disaster kit should also include any documentation you have for your pet. This can include vet records, shots or vaccinations, prescriptions or even microchip information if applicable. You want to make sure that you have all information about your pet in one place, so you’ll be able ensure your pet’s health is taken care of.
Also consider that you’ll need this paperwork in a watertight container.
Another good option for keeping this paperwork is to make a digital copy and keep it on your phone. Though, remember that you’ll need power to access it then.
Other Supplies for Your Pet Disaster Kit
When packing your pet disaster kit, consider what things your pet will need to be comfortable, but also consider what they might want for stimulation. Consider packing some toys or some treats for them. You might also consider packing cleaning supplies for them as well.
An emergency situation can be made a little bit easier by planning and practicing. Making sure everyone in your family is taken care of can really help reduce a lot of the stress in what will certainly be an already stressful situation.