Hill's Offers Pet Safety Tips for Emergencies
The SPCA of Texas is joining Hill’s Pet Nutrition and its nation-wide network of animal shelter partners in a campaign to educate pet families about the importance of including pets in their emergency planning. September has been designated National Preparedness Month by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to remind families to make emergency plans to help them respond in the event of a disaster or emergency situation. As families assemble a disaster supplies kit, the SPCA of Texas and Hill’s are encouraging them to also create a pet emergency go-kit.
“Planning ahead is the best way for families to ensure that all members of their family, including pets, are ready to face an emergency,” said Joann Fuller, who oversees Hill’s Food, Shelter & Love® program. “Creating a pet emergency go-kit beforehand can relieve some of the stress families experience and 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.”
The pet emergency go-kit should be stored alongside the rest of the family’s emergency supplies and include the following items:
- 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
The SPCA of Texas and Hill’s also recommend the following Tips to Help Ensure Your Pet’s Safety in an Emergency:
- Ensure your pet’s identification by using a microchip or collar ID tag, and make sure that all contact information is up to date. You can update the microchip’s contact information at the manufacturer’s website by locating the code from the barcode sticker or the confirmation form provided by your veterinarian or animal shelter.
- Display a pet rescue decal on the front door or window to let first responders know there is a pet in the house. Include your veterinarian’s contact information.
- Learn where your pets like to hide in the house when frightened. Finding a pet quickly will help to evacuate faster.
- Identify a location to take a pet in case of evacuation. Keep in mind that disaster shelters for people may not be open to pets. Scout hotels and motels with pet-friendly policies and ask relatives or friends if they could house you and your pet.
- Carry a picture of your pet in the event of separation.
- In case of evacuation, consider taking a pet carrier or crate for transport and safe keeping.
“The SPCA of Texas is pleased to partner with Hill’s Pet Nutrition to help educate the public on how to care for pets in preparation of a disaster,” said Karen Froehlich, President and CEO for the SPCA of Texas. “Pets are family, and including them in all disaster planning is an important way to ensure you all have what you need during unforeseen disasters.”
When communities are hit hard by disaster and even the best laid plans are not enough , Hill’s Disaster Relief Network responds quickly to supply free pet food to families in need. This first-of-its-kind network was established in 2013 as an extension of the Hill’s Food, Shelter & Love® program, which has provided nearly $300 million worth of Hill’s® pet foods to more than 1,000 shelters in North America over the last 17 years, helping more than 10 million pets find new homes.
Since 2013, Hill’s Disaster Relief 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 can view the entire Pet Emergency Go-Kit and learn more tips about disaster preparedness and safety at HillsPet.com/PetPrepared. Shelters in need of assistance can contact DisasterRelief@hillspet.com.