DEAR PAW’S CORNER: We’re moving into the height of hurricane season in the Southeast, and I’m wondering if you can remind readers to include their pets in emergency planning? Thanks. – Dwayne W., West Palm Beach, Fla.
DEAR DWAYNE: You’ve got it! Florida residents are encouraged to create a “hurricane kit” before the season starts. This is an easy-to-load collection of items that they can grab quickly if they are evacuated from their homes. Items include copies of important personal documents (like home deeds and insurance), contact numbers and other hard-to-replace records. Extra medications, blankets, spare clothing, diapers, a small amount of nonperishable food and so on also are recommended.
The truth is, everyone should have a version of this kit in their home, regardless of its location, because natural disasters can strike anywhere. And along with the family documents, pet owners should have copies of their pets’ shot records, extra pet medications and nonperishable pet food. A spare collar and leash – with ID tags attached – flea and tick preventative and heartworm medication, as well as the veterinarian’s phone number should be included, too. And have a secure pet carrier for each pet – many evacuation shelters will not allow your pet unless it is in a carrier.
If you’d like more disaster preparedness tips, check my site, PawsCorner.com. In addition, Petfinder.com has a page filled with tips for summertime safety and disaster preparedness information.
Send your questions or comments to email@example.com, or write to Paw’s Corner, c/o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. Did you know mosquitoes can transmit heartworm larvae to dogs, but fleas don’t? Find out more in my new book “Fighting Fleas,” available now. For more pet care-related advice and information, visit www.pawscorner.com. © 2013 King Features Synd., Inc.