Pet Safety

If you are like millions of animal owners nationwide, your pet is an important member of your household.

The likelihood that you and your animals will survive an emergency such as a fire or flood, tornado or terrorist attack depends largely on emergency planning done today. Some of the things you can do to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling an animal emergency supply kit and developing a pet care buddy system, are the same for any emergency. Whether you decide to stay put in an emergency or evacuate to a safer location, you will need to make plans in advance for your pets. Keep in mind that what's best for you is typically what's best for your animals.

If instructed to evacuate, take your pets with you if possible. However, if you are going to a public shelter, it is important to understand that animals may not be allowed inside. Make alternative shelter arrangements that will work for both you and your pets.

Make a back-up emergency plan in case you can't care for your animals yourself. Develop a buddy system with neighbors, friends and relatives to make sure that someone is available to care for or evacuate your pets if you are unable to do so. Also be sure to have a “Pets Inside” sticker on a window in the front of your house, so emergency responders are able to rescue the pets. Be prepared to improvise and use what you have on hand to make it on your own for at least three days, maybe longer.


  • Pet Info (75)

    Don't forget your pets!

    If your family needs to go to a shelter, please know that all Red Cross shelters and many others do not allow pets unless they are service animals. Talk to your veterinarian now to determine where the closest emergency animal shelter is located to ensure your pet's safety. The Veterinarian Medical Association is a great resource where you can learn more.

    American Veterinary Medical Association »

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