Pet Preparedness in Disaster/Pandemic Situations

Be prepared in case you become too ill or injured to care for your pet or must be hospitalized. Try to arrange for a friend, relative, or neighbor to care for your pet in your home if you are unable to ahead of time. As a last resort, you may have to board your pet at a local facility or contact your local animal control services for alternative housing options.

  • Place identification on your pet such as a collar with a name tag, that includes your contact information. This is especially important if your pet is not microchipped.

  • If your pet is microchipped, double check that the microchip is registered and that your contact information is current.

  • Find your pet’s medical records. These records should accompany your pet if they leave your home.

  • Have a three-week supply of your pet’s medication and food with instructions on how and when to administer it. If possible, provide the original prescription for any medications.

  • Update your pet’s vaccines if needed. A boarding facility or shelter would prefer that you pet is up to date on their vaccines to help protect your pet while in their care.

  • Have a secure carrier/kennel for each small pet. Be sure larger dogs are wearing a collar or harness and have a leash.

  • Write a summary about your pet, including: their normal daily routine, activities they like to do, situations or people that may scare them, and their overall personality. This will help caregivers make your pet more comfortable.

National animal welfare organizations are providing valuable information to rescues/shelters as it becomes available. Resources include: safe animal handling guidelines, template forms that may be necessary for alternative housing, and best practice protocols for disinfecting public areas during a pandemic. This page will update as information becomes available.