As a loving pup parent, you want to keep your dog safe at all times. But in the event of an earthquake, it can be difficult to protect them if you don’t have a plan in place. The good news is that with a little advance planning, you can be prepared and ready to protect your four-legged friend from the unexpected. In this blog post we’ll show you how – in just 5 easy steps.
1. Create a Pet Disaster Plan
Earthquakes can strike at any time, so it’s vital to make a plan that will help you protect your pet. Contact friends and family ahead of time to make plans for temporary accommodation. You can also search online for places to stay that will allow you to bring your dog. Websites like Bring Fido and Dog Friendly list hotels, motels, and other accommodations that welcome pets.
It’s also a good idea to contact veterinary practices, boarding facilities, and rescue centers outside of your local area. Some of these places may be able to care for your dog in the event of an earthquake. Make sure to keep all contact information in a secure, easily-accessible place so you can act quickly if disaster strikes.
2. Build an Emergency Kit for Your Dog
Build an emergency kit and keep it in a safe place so it’s ready to go if you need to evacuate in a hurry. Here’s a list of essentials to include in your dog’s emergency kit:
- Food and water. Pack at least two weeks’ worth of food and water for every dog in your household. Make sure to check labels from time to time to ensure food doesn’t expire. And don’t forget to pack collapsible bowls for food and water that you can easily carry with you.
- Documents and identification. Keep important documents in a waterproof bag. Include photo ID cards, microchip information, medical records, and registration forms.
- Medical supplies. Put together a first aid kit for your dog with essentials like bandages, tweezers, alcohol wipes, cotton swabs, and eye drops. If your dog takes regular medications, don’t forget to add them to the kit.
- Travel accessories. Make sure to pack all the items your dog needs to travel safely and comfortably. A sturdy leash, collar, harness, and carrier are all must-haves. You can also include a supply of toys and treats to help keep your pup happy during an emergency.
- Cleaning supplies. Keep poop bags, paper towels, and disinfectant in your kit so you can clean up after your dog.
Need help building your emergency kit? This Pet Disaster Preparedness Kit Checklist from the CDC is an excellent resource for pet parents.
3. Make Sure Your Dog Is Microchipped
Getting your dog microchipped is one of the best ways to increase the chances of you being reunited if they go missing during an earthquake. These tiny implants are injected under the skin, usually on the back of your dog’s neck between their shoulder blades. Each implant is about the size of a grain of rice and contains a unique identification number.
A microchip is a permanent form of identification that can’t be lost or damaged. It doesn’t rely on batteries, so it will work as long as the chip remains implanted in your pet’s skin. If your dog is not already microchipped, talk to your veterinarian about the process. Once your dog is microchipped, make sure to register the number with a national pet recovery database so they can be identified if they go missing.
4. Ensure They Wear a Collar with Identification Tags
It’s also important to make sure your dog wears a collar with ID tags, so anyone who finds them can easily contact you and reunite you with your pup. A pet identification tag should include your phone number and address, as well as any other key information, such as the breed of dog or underlying medical conditions. Tags can be attached to your dog’s collar, so they’re worn at all times.
Even if your dog is microchipped, it’s still important to include contact information on their collar so you can be easily reached in case of an emergency. Often, an ID tag is the only way people can identify a lost dog during an earthquake. Be sure to update the tags on your pet’s collar any time you move or change your contact information.
5. Use Rescue Alert Stickers to Help First Responders
Rescue alert stickers are a great resource for first responders because they make it easier to identify pets in the event of an earthquake. They’re pretty simple – you can put them on your windows or doors so anyone who comes across your house knows there might be animals inside that need help.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) offers free rescue alert stickers for pet parents. They can be filled out with your contact information, the types and number of pets in your home, and your veterinarian’s contact details. If you evacuate your home with your pets during a disaster, the ASPCA recommends writing EVACUATED across the stickers to ensure first responders know you’ve already left the premises.
The 5 easy steps we’ve outlined in this post should help you prepare your dog for an earthquake. Remember, it’s important to take steps before an earthquake strikes so your dog can stay safe and secure during a crisis. Even if you live in an area that rarely experiences earthquakes, it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to being prepared!
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