Prepping for hurricanes. Ugh. But this is the price we must pay to live in this beautiful paradise we call home. Some of us (ahem…me) wait until the very last moment to buy the necessary supplies for survival. (I’m not getting out of bed until it’s a Cat 3.) All joking aside, hurricanes are a very real and very dangerous threat. That Category 1 storm can turn into a Category 4 overnight which leaves little time and resources to be adequately prepared for evacuation or riding it out in our homes or local shelters. If you have lived on the Treasure Coast long enough, you have witnessed firsthand the amazing strength and destructive capabilities of these storms.
Hurricane preparation protocol is different for everyone depending on the size of their family, medical needs, pets, employment responsibilities, etc. For most pet owners, preparation seems pretty straight forward…food and water, right? Wrong. Below are a few tips we want all pet owners to be aware of this hurricane season:
- Pet carriers people! Before Hurricane Irma in 2017, so many desperate pet parents came to H.A.L.O. for crates/carriers that we ran out and had to turn people away. Please make sure that you have the appropriate travel carriers for your animals. This will ensure safe transportation for your pets and most evacuation shelters require these before allowing you into the facility. Make sure each carrier is labeled with the animal’s name, breed, sex, medical needs and your current contact information.
- Sign up for your local shelter that accepts pets ahead of time. Unfortunately, shelters have limited room and that means some people and their pets will be turned away. Indian River County does have a pet-friendly shelter but they do suggest you complete the registration form in advance. For more information, Click Here.
- Food and Water. Many experts and veterinarians suggest having a week’s worth of food and water on hand for each animal but we suggest two weeks if at all possible. Most times after a major hurricane, gas is scarce, roads are impassable, electricity is down and stores remain closed which is why having two weeks of food and water is much safer. P.S. Don’t forget the bowls!
- Medications. If your pet has daily medications, the two week rule applies here as well. It is also a good idea to apply flea treatments and heartworm preventatives prior to a hurricane. After the storm, your pet may (will) come in contact with fleas and mosquitos and the extra protection will be beneficial.
- Please, for all that is good in this world, have you pets microchipped! It is imperative that all of your animals are chipped AND they have your current contact information. During a major hurricane, pets often get separated from their families and microchipping is the their best bet in finding their way home. Contact your local veterinarian to chip your pet for a nominal fee.
We love our pets like family and we need to make sure that they have the resources necessary for their survival. For more information on hurricane preparedness for your animals, please feel free to Contact Us.