So far, it seems the old adage of April Showers has held true to course. Daily rainfall can lead to flooding in coastal areas such as Long Island and we’ve seen our fair share of recent disasters. As such, we want to remind our pet owners of all of the potential dangers of severe weather.
Summer of last year left as many as 20,000 Long Islanders without power. In blackout situations that force people to evacuate, pet owners should take their pets with them. Exposure to extreme temperatures due from loss of heat or cooling may be dangerous to pets.
For instances of flood danger, pet owners should plan multiple routes to higher elevations and a safe destination. People should not assume that emergency shelters will allow pets. Prior to disaster striking, pet owners should contact their local emergency management office to see if there are pet-friendly shelters in the area. It would also be useful to lookup motels and hotels outside of town to see if they allow both people and pets as well as restrictions on the number, size and species.
Pet owners should make sure that cats and dogs are wearing collars and identification tags that are up to date. Owners may additionally want to get their dog or cat microchipped to increase the likelihood of a safe return home should the pet get lost or their collar fall off during an emergency.
In the event that a disaster occurs without warning, all pet owners should have an animal-friendly emergency kit that includes pet medication and medical records, sturdy leashes and harnesses and/or carriers to transport the animal, food, water, litter box, scoops and garbage bags, the veterinarian’s contact information, current photos of the animal in case they get lost and the pet’s bed or toys (if easily transportable).
“Emergency preparedness is crucial ensuring the safety of pets, their owners and first responders,” says Dr. John Charos, DVM, President/CEO, Central Veterinary Associates. “Pet owners need to plan ahead to secure the information and essentials they will need during a natural disaster. VA offers microchipping services and pet boarding that has a veterinarian make regular rounds to ensure your pet’s comfort and administer medications during their stay.”
CVA keeps its hospital in Valley Stream open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, including all major holidays. For more information or to make an appointment, call 1 (888) 4CVA-PET (428-2738) or visit www.centralvets.com.