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Boreal Community Media

Pets need disaster plans too!

Sep 30, 2019 07:20AM ● By Editor

Media Release from Dumb Friend's League and Hill Nutrition - September 30, 2019

In recognition of FEMA’s National Preparedness Month in September, the Dumb Friends League is joining Hill’s Pet Nutrition and its network of animal shelter partners in a community awareness campaign to provide pet parents with practical pet preparedness tips and information.

 “Planning ahead is the best way for people to ensure all members of their family, including pets, are ready to face an emergency,” said Joann Fuller, who oversees Hill’s Pet Nutrition Food, Shelter & Love® program. “Creating a pet emergency go-kit beforehand can relieve some of the stress families experience and help keep pets safe when disasters strike. Our ultimate goal is to reduce the number of cats and dogs that are hurt, displaced or abandoned when communities are impacted by disaster.”

 A pet emergency go-kit should be stored alongside families’ emergency supplies and it should include:

  • Basic first aid supplies
  • A 3-day supply of bottled water and the pet’s preferred food, held in a waterproof container
  • Safety harness and leash
  • Waste clean-up supplies
  • Medications and a copy of the pet’s medical records
  • List of veterinarians and local pet care organizations
  • List of the pet’s feeding routine and any behavioral issues
  • Comfort items, such as a blanket or favorite toy, to help keep the pet calm and comfortable
  • Pet carrier or crate

Hill’s and the League also recommend the following tips to help ensure your pet’s safety in an emergency:

  1. Ensure your contact information is up-to-date on your pet’s microchip and/or collar ID tag.
  2. Display a pet rescue decal on the front door or window to let first responders know there is a pet in the home and include your veterinarian’s contact information.
  3. Learn where your pets like to hide when frightened, so you can quickly find them if you need to evacuate.
  4. Identify a location to take your pet in case of evacuation. Many disaster shelters for people may not accept pets. Look for pet-friendly hotels and ask relatives or friends if they could house you and your pet.
  5. Carry a picture of your pet in the event of separation.

When even the best laid plans are not enough and communities are hit hard by disaster, Hill’s Disaster Relief Network responds quickly to supply free pet food to families in need. Since 2013, the network has delivered over 360,000 pounds of free food to nearly 360 organizations across the country in response to more than 86 disasters, including floods, tornadoes, mudslides and the devastating hurricanes in Florida and North Carolina last year.

Families looking to learn more about disaster preparedness and safety, as well as the Hill’s Disaster Relief Network, can visit To request assistance during an emergency, shelters can contact [email protected].