Over 1,000 residents experienced the loss of their pets as a result of a single Colorado wildfire reported in 2021. Should you live in an area prone to natural disasters, it is wise to have an emergency plan in place regarding your pets.
Thankfully, many pet shelters are opening their doors to accept pets during the uncertainty of a looming natural disaster. However, you should always take preemptive measures to secure yourself and your pet in case a pet shelter is unavailable or there’s no time to embark on that route.
Tips for Preparing Your Pets for a Wildfire Emergency
The following tips should help guide you through some necessary planning when it comes to the pets you love during a wildfire emergency.
• Have an emergency backpack or duffle bag for your pet(s) with extra collars, leashes, carriers, medication, food, toys, etc. in your vehicle or a designated area.
• Keep digital records of all vet documents related to your pet saved to the cloud (e.g., Google Drive, etc.)
• Don’t fall behind on vaccinations in case you need to quickly admit your pet into a shelter where up-to-date shot records are required.
• Do your homework in advance to know what nearby hotels are pet friendly and their requirements. This is especially important when you need to evacuate immediately and find somewhere to stay.
• Consider discussing with friends and family who would be willing to take your pet should a wildfire or other natural disaster strike. Having various options available ahead of time reduces the stress and complication when trying to make last-minute decisions.
• Keep digital photos of you and your pet together to assist with verifying ownership in case they go missing during your evacuation process.
• Add a tracking tag to your pet’s collar or be sure to have your pet microchipped and ensure you can quickly locate any login credentials or other information needed.
Sadly, many pet owners are ill-equipped to handle the devastation that comes with wildfires, earthquakes, tornados and other natural disasters. Thankfully, you don’t have to be one of them. Ensure you are taking the proper precautions now to save yourself avoidable stress later.
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