Close your eyes. Imagine you have to flee. Now.
Visually walk through a whole day. What could you absolutely not do without? What would your children, pets, elderly parents or grandparents need? Does your kit cover these needs?
Our article this week kicks off a series on Going Beyond – Preparing for the Whole Family. It is our intent that these articles trigger ideas of items to add to your emergency kits so you are not caught without.
Now open your eyes and breathe – you still have time to add to your kit.
For those of us who have pets, we consider them to be a very important part of our family. Just as we want to protect our children and other family members from any harm during a disaster, we also want to make sure our pets are safe. It is hard to tell how an animal will react in an emergency, so being as prepared as possible will help both you and your pet to stay calm.
While preparing our own emergency kits, we should also prepare emergency kits for our pets. Food, water, and first aid supplies are items pets will need too. Other items we should consider are extra leashes, collars, treats, chew toys, familiar blankets and any medications your pets may be on. Including a few pictures of your pet to show to people in case your pet gets lost is also a good idea.
There are other things you can do so that you are better prepared to help your pet. Taking pet first aid is something the whole family can be a part of and can make you feel a little more at ease knowing you can attend to an injured animal, your or someone else’s. Calling ahead to your local animal shelter to see if they take pets during emergencies, or making arrangements with a neighbour or friend to watch your pet if needed, are also good things to check out ahead of time.
Check with your local pet stores to see if they can suggest any additional items that would be good to have on hand. The Canadian Red Cross also has a great list here.
A small amount of planning before a disaster can make all the difference for you, your family, and your pets when the time comes.
Stay tuned for next week’s article.