September is National Disaster Preparedness month – are you and your family, including your pets, prepared in case of emergency?

We don’t know about you, but this isn’t something we think about on a day to day basis, and it’s easy to think “nothing bad will ever happen to me” and as much as we hate to admit it, we enjoy wearing that cloak of invincibility.  However, in the wake of the recent Colorado floods, many families were displaced, lost loved ones, and are currently trying to rebuild, so this topic has been on the forefront of everyone’s minds.

We should all know some basics about being prepared in case of disaster, so we have put together a list of some tips and checklists, with the help of our friends at American Red Cross and PetAid Colorado, that will help you and your family be prepared in case of emergency.

  1. Bring your pets with you
    If the worst should happen, and you need to evacuate your home, bring your pets with you.  If it’s not safe for you to stay in your home, it isn’t safe for your pets either.  Be sure your pet’s tags are up to date and secured on their collar in case you are separated.
  2. Pack an emergency kit for you and your pets
    Here are some suggestions for what your kit should include:

    • First Aid Kit
    • Medications & Medical records, including copies of up-to-date vaccinations
    • Sturdy leashes, collars, carriers, etc.
    • Food and drinkable water (at least a 3 day supply)
    • Bowls, litter, bake tins (works great for a litter box).
    • Current photos of you with your pets in case you are separated
    • Bedding, if easily transportable
    • Blanket
    • Alcohol based hand sanitizer
    • Cell phone and charger
    • Flashlight with extra batteries
    • Extra change of clothes
  3. In Case of Emergency Window DecalMaintain a current emergency decal or sticker on window of home indicating pets in home for fire/emergency or other rescue personnel. VRCC has these decals available, just stop by our front desk.
  4. Create a list of emergency contacts.  Know where the nearest hospital, animal shelter, and fire station is to your home.  Also, keep a list of phone numbers and physical addresses for friends and family on this list.
  5. Research local networks and disaster services in your area.

Here are some great resources: