top of page

Essential Tips for Preparing Your Pets for a Flooding Disaster

Updated: May 8

Introduction

 

Natural disasters, especially floods, are occurring more frequently and with greater severity, posing significant challenges to both humans and their pets. Having a plan in place as responsible pet owners is crucial to ensure the safety and well-being of our furry companions during emergencies.

Floods present various risks to pets, including drowning, exposure to contaminated water, injuries from debris, and separation from their owners. The rapid rise of water levels, strong currents, and potential contamination make floods particularly hazardous for pets. Additionally, the chaos of evacuations can further stress animals and increase the likelihood of separation from their owners. At The Andys Veterinary Clinic, we understand the significance of pet care during disasters, particularly amidst the current flooding situation and we are here to provide crucial advice on how to care for your pets during these challenging times.




What kind of Preparedness measures do I need?

 

1. Prepare an Emergency Kit:

Before disaster strikes, it's essential to have an emergency kit prepared for your pets. This kit should include:

  • Sufficient food and water for at least three days.

  • Medications and medical records stored in a waterproof container, i.e, copies of your pet's medical records, including vaccination certificates and any pertinent health information.

  • Comfort items such as blankets, toys, and familiar bedding.

  • Collars with ID tags and leashes.

  • A carrier or crate for each pet.

  • Litter box and litter for cats.



2. Ensure Proper Identification:

During emergencies, pets can easily become separated from their owners. Make sure your pets are microchipped and that their microchip information is up to date. Additionally, attach a collar with visible identification tags containing your contact information. This dual identification method greatly increases the chances of being reunited with your pet if you become separated.


3. Evacuation Plan:

Develop a clear evacuation plan that includes designated meeting points and routes to safety plus designated pet-friendly shelters or accommodations. Practice evacuation drills with your pet to familiarize them with the process and reduce stress during an actual emergency. Identify pet-friendly shelters or hotels in advance, as not all shelters accept animals; so it's essential to know where you can seek refuge together.


4. Stay Informed and Be Prepared:


Stay updated on weather forecasts and evacuation orders in your area. Sign up for emergency alerts to receive timely information. It's crucial to heed evacuation orders issued by local authorities without delay. Additionally, develop a detailed evacuation plan that includes arrangements for your pets to ensure their safety during emergencies.




What do I do During the Flood?

 

1. Secure Safe Haven:

If evacuation becomes necessary, secure a safe haven for your pet beforehand. Never leave them behind, as floodwaters can rise rapidly, putting their lives at risk.


2. Use Leashes or Carriers:

Keep your pets on leashes or in carriers to prevent them from wandering off or getting lost amidst the chaos of flooding.


3. Avoid Contaminated Water:

Steer clear of floodwaters, as they may contain harmful bacteria, chemicals, or debris that can pose health risks to pets.


4. Keep Pets Indoors:

During flooding events, it's safest to keep your pets indoors to prevent them from becoming disoriented or lost. Secure all doors and windows to prevent escape, and designate a safe area for your pets to take shelter.


5. Avoid Flooded Areas:

Keep your pets away from flooded areas, which can be hazardous due to swift currents, contaminated water, and submerged obstacles. Even seemingly shallow water can be dangerous, so keep pets away from floodwaters.


6. Monitor for Signs of Distress:

Pets may show signs of distress during emergencies, such as agitation, restlessness, excessive panting, or hiding. Be observant of your pet's behavior and provide reassurance and comfort as needed. If you notice any signs of illness or injury, seek veterinary care promptly.


What do I do After the Flood?

 

1. Evaluate for Injuries:

Once the floodwaters have receded, carefully examine your pet for any indications of injury or distress. If you observe any concerning symptoms, promptly seek veterinary care.


2. Maintain Normalcy:

Restore a sense of routine for your pet by resuming their regular feeding, exercise, and grooming schedules as soon as possible.


3. Monitor for Stress:

Keep a vigilant watch over your pet for signs of stress or anxiety, such as restlessness, excessive panting, or behavioral changes. Offer reassurance and comfort as needed to help alleviate any distress.


Conclusion

 

During times of disaster, our pets rely on us for their safety and well-being. By taking proactive measures and staying informed, we can effectively navigate pet care during floods and other emergencies. At The Andys Veterinary Clinic, we're committed to supporting pet owners in safeguarding the health and happiness of their furry companions, even amidst the most challenging circumstances.


Remember, in times of flooding and other disasters, the safety and well-being of your pets should be a top priority. By following the advice we have provided here as The Andys Veterinary Clinic, you can help ensure that your furry companions remain safe and secure during these challenging times.


Remember, preparation is key, and together, we can ensure a brighter, safer future for both pets and their loving owners.


Stay safe, stay prepared, and never leave your pet behind.


References

 

Taylor, M., Lynch, E., Burns, P., & Eustace, G. (2015). The preparedness and evacuation behaviour of pet owners in emergencies and natural disasters. Australian Journal of Emergency Management, The, 30(2), 18-23.


Farmer, A. K., DeYoung, S. E., & Wachtendorf, T. (2016). Pets and evacuation: an ongoing challenge in disasters. Journal of homeland security and emergency management, 13(4), 20160051.


American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). (2022). "Pet owners urged to include pets in disaster preparedness plans." Retrieved from [https://www.avma.org/javma-news/2022-02-15/pet-owners-urged-include-pets-disaster-preparedness-plans](https://www.avma.org/javma-news/2022-02-15/pet-owners-urged-include-pets-disaster-preparedness-plans)


American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). (2022). Pet Evacuation and Emergency Planning. Retrieved from https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/pet-owners/petcare/pet-evacuation-and-emergency-planning


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (2022). Keep Your Pets Safe in Emergencies. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/keepyourpetssafe.html


The Humane Society of the United States. (n.d.). Disaster Preparedness for Pets. Retrieved from https://www.humanesociety.org/resources/disaster-preparedness-pets


American Veterinary Medical Association - Disaster Preparedness for Pet Owners https://www.avma.org/resources-tools/emergency-preparedness-and-response/disaster-preparedness-pet-owners

46 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page