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We always need to be prepared to take care of our animals, especially during disasters such as fire, flood, or other emergencies. In cases of fire or natural disasters, you need to be prepared in case your pet gets injured, lost, or has to be evacuated.

Here are a few ways to keep your pet safe during an emergency:

  1. Never leave your pet behind.

Unless, of course, the house is on fire or caving in and you have to first protect yourself or a human member of your family. But don’t assume your pet will be okay for a few days without you. If she’s left behind, she can get lost, become malnourished, or get hurt from the disaster. Although emergencies are not always foreseen – especially evacuations due to a terrorist attack or sudden fire – having a pre-planned course of action can help reduce the risk of your pet being left alone to fend for herself.

  2. Make prior arrangements.

Because most Americans work, pets are often home alone. But if disaster strikes and you’re not home (and there is no pet sitter or dog walker), make sure someone knows that you have a pet and that he needs to get to safety. Give a neighbor or friend – specifically one who is comfortable and familiar with your pet – a spare key. And put a rescue alert sticker on your front door to alert police or firefighters that there is a pet inside the home.

  3. Evacuate safely and evacuate early.

If your city is on alert for a winter storm or hurricane, don’t be the last person to leave town. Animals are resilient, yes, but they are harder to harbor than humans because not every restaurant, hospital, or hotel accepts them. What’s more, loading them into a carrier or crate will be especially difficult if they’re stressed or afraid from all the commotion. Evacuating safely and early helps keep the situation calm, cool, and collected and ensures every person and every pet is accounted for.

  4. Prepare an emergency kit.

Pack an emergency kit for your pet as you would for yourself – chock-full of essentials like her leash, collar, first aid, food, water, medications, medical records, and any important documents. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also suggests packing familiar items (if there’s room, of course) like beds, blankets, and toys to help keep your pet calm during travel. In order to keep the nasty smells to a minimum, don’t forget a litter box and litter for cats and plastic poop bags for dogs.

Prepare your first aid kit from exclusive products of BonBeno, always be prepared. Visit www.bonbeno.com for more information.