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June is National Pet Preparedness Month

Everyone is so excited when summer begins with days at the dog park and weekends at the lake, but eventually there come other, not-so-fun weather conditions. These can include flooding, tornadoes, wildfires and hurricanes. Luckily as a reminder, June is National Pet Preparedness Month, giving pet parents a nudge to put plans together in case of an emergency or natural disaster. 

One of the most important things to get done is to get a pet the proper identification. Make sure all tags have the correct address or phone numbers so that if a pet gets lost, their parent can easily be found. The same goes for microchips. Another helpful tip is to include information such as whether they need medication on their tag to help emergency personnel know what type of care they need while they work on reconnecting pet and parent. 

In areas that are prone to any type of natural disaster, pet parents should find a safe place outside of the area where they can take their pets. It doesn’t matter where the safe place is, at a friends home or a family members, or a pet friendly hotel. A good idea is to have a list of options and contact numbers for planned safe locations. Even if it’s for a short time or a minor issue, if it’s too hot or cold for a pet parent to stay at their home, it’s the same for their pets. Don’t leave them behind! In a situation when the pet parent isn’t home when disaster strikes, have a plan in place with a neighbor, friend or family member who can come to the home and take the pet to either to their place, or a designated safe location.

Natural disasters are scary for everyone, but especially for pets because they don’t understand what is going on. In the craziness of running around or evacuating, things can easily be forgotten. That’s why it’s a good idea to put together an emergency kit that includes everything a pet parent will need to take care of their pet for a few days. The kit should include bowls, food, bottles of water, a leash and/or harness, extra medications, first aid kit, treats, and maybe a toy or something to keep them calm. If evacuation does occur, keep a pet on a leash at all times while outside. The area may be unfamiliar to the pet, with many different smells and sounds. If they get away, they could easily head back to the area that their parent had just left. 

Having a plan in place is better than no plan at all! By being prepared, both pets and their parents can enjoy the summer, stay safe, and most importantly, stay together.