Who else remembers evacuating Houston for Rita in 2005? (Holy cow - was that really 11 years ago?!?) We did and it took us 7+ hours to drive to Austin via the back roads. Then a few years later, we sheltered in our home during Ike - me, my husband, and our then two dogs huddled in a pool of blankets in the dark closet under the stairs. Luckily we sustained no serious damage in either storm, and actually the first couple days after Ike turned into a fun block party in our neighborhood. But I digress.. Whether you evacuate or stay put, it's important to be prepared and have a plan which includes your pets.
Tips for preparing your pet for hurricane season
- Get your pet microchipped and confirm the registration is in your name. Ensure your pet wears a collar and ID tags with current contact information, specifically your name and cell phone number.
- Make sure your pet is up-to-date on vaccinations. Many shelters or boarding facilities will not accept animals who are not current on shots.
- Pack an emergency kit that includes: 3-5 days supply of food, water, medications, vet records, food dishes, leash, harness, puppy pads, cat litter/tray, can opener, trash bags, recent photo of your pet, and crate.
- Make a plan and stick to it. If you evacuate, take your pet, leave early, and confirm that your pets are welcome at your destination, whether it's a hotel, shelter, or friend's house. If you ride out the storm, consider the best room to stay in and keep your pet on a leash or in a crate to prevent a frightened pet from running away.
This downloadable pdf is a helpful resource and checklist for preparing your pets for emergencies.
If your pet needs a microchip or vaccinations, the Houston Humane Society is hosting a Hurricane Prep Clinic every Sunday in July.
Do you have any additional tips? Please share!