Pet Preparedness

Dogon the road holding his own leash in his mouthWhen You Go - THEY Go!

Be prepared to protect your pets in an emergency

FICTION: People believe that they cannot bring their pets with them if they had to evacuate, and that they will be able to quickly return to care for their pets

FACT: In an emergency, you may not be able or allowed to return in order to rescue your pets.

In An Emergency, Take Your Pets With You

Do not put your pets’ lives, your life, or other rescuers’ lives at risk



    1. One kit per pet - see below for a pet emergency kit checklist
    2. Keep near an exit for easy Grab-and-Go
  2. Take Photos of Your Pet With You and/or Your Family

    1. Photos can prove ownership and reunite you with your pet
    2. Keep copies in wallet, disaster kit, and stored on phones
    3. Give copies to loved ones who live outside your area
  3. Microchip Your Pet

    1. Single most effective way to reunite pets with families
    2. Update microchip registration when:
      1. You move
      2. Change phone numbers
      3. Get a new emergency contact
  4. Start a Buddy System

    1. Exchange keys and disaster plans with a trusted neighbor or local friend who can evacuate your pets if you are not home during a disaster
    2. Keep your buddy current regarding your pet’s information and your emergency contact info
  5. Identify Evacuation Locations

    1. Identify shelters that will accommodate pets; consider pet-friendly hotels and loved ones
    2. Store phone numbers and addresses in your disaster kit and on your phone
    3. PRACTICE loading and unloading pets into the carriers and your vehicle.

Learn more at: or 1-800-BE-READY


(PDF version of Pet Emergency Checklist)

1. Food & Water

❑ At least 3-5 day supply of food in airtight container

❑ Manual can opener for canned foods

❑ 3-5 day supply of water

❑ Food and water bowls

❑ Feeding instructions

2. Medications & Medical Records

❑ Keep extra supply of medicines in waterproof container

❑ 3-5 day supply of medication (if applicable)

❑ Medication instructions (if applicable)

3. Documents

❑ Copies of registration information

❑ Adoption papers

❑ Vaccination documents

❑ Medical records

❑ Keep all records in a waterproof container/bag

❑ Recent photo of you and your pet

❑ Description of your pet (ex: breed, sex, color, weight)

❑ Microchip information

❑ Your contact information (and that of your pet’s emergency buddy)

4. Collar with ID tag, harness/leash

❑ Should wear rabies tag and ID tag at all times

❑ Include back-up collar, leash, and ID tag

5. Crate/Carrier

❑ Large enough for pet to stand, turn around, lay down

❑ Blankets and towels for bedding

6. Sanitation

❑ Newspapers

❑ Paper towels

❑ Litter, litterbox, and scoop (if applicable)

❑ Trash bags

❑ Household chlorine bleach, disinfectant

7. Familiar items – to reduce stress

❑ Toys

❑ Treats

❑ Bedding

8. Pet first aid book and kit

❑ Ask your vet what items would be appropriate, such as: bandage rolls, tape, scissors, antibiotic ointment, flea/tick prevention, gloves, isopropyl alcohol, saline solution