Thursday, May 12, 2016

Southern Kitties Are #PetPrepared For Disasters

Recently, we experienced a 1000-year flood in South Carolina.  Hundreds of residents near us were displaced from their homes along with their pets.  We never thought about a natural disaster occurring so close to us, but we had homes surrounded by water within 5 miles from our house.  We saw photos on the TV and Internet of animals who were trapped in their homes, found roaming around the streets, and ended up in shelters.   Some pets were already in shelters, but were displaced again because the floods destroyed the shelters. This is a scary thought to us because South Carolina has a history of natural disasters: tornadoes, hurricanes, severe thunderstorms, flooding, ice storms, and earthquakes (yes, we are on a fault line).

Hill’s Food, Shelter & Love® Disaster Relief Network is poised and ready to help at a moment’s notice during a disaster.  This network helps to ensure that all of the animals, though stressed and upset, have proper nutrition to keep them healthy until they can be reunited with their owners. From the stories we heard during the South Carolina floods, people barely  had time to evacuate their human families from their homes and unfortunately many were separated from their pets.  It is important to have a plan in place that ensures the health and safety of your pet in times of crisis.  Hill's® established the first-of-its-kind national network in 2013 as an extension of it's Food, Shelter & Love program to quickly respond with shipments of pet food to communities impacted by disaster.  Since 2013, the Hill's network has delivered free pet food to more than 60 different shelters and veterinary clinics across the United States in response to 25 major incidents.  

Emergency workers rescuing animals after a disaster
Photo courtesy of Hill’s® Pet Nutrition, Inc.


May 14 is FEMA National Pet Disaster Preparedness day.  We admit that we've been a little slack in being prepared, but realize this is the perfect time to make preparations for those unexpected emergencies.  The Hill's Disaster Relief Network recommends these Seven Tips to Ensure Your Pet's Safety in an Emergency.

  1. Ensure your pet can be identified by either a microchip or collar ID tag and that contact information is up-to-date. 
  2. Prepare a “Pet Emergency Go-Kit” of pet supplies that is readily accessible in an emergency. Your Pet Go-Kit should include the following: first aid supplies and guide book; a 3-day supply of pet food in a waterproof container and bottled water; a safety harness and leash; waste clean-up supplies; medications and medical records; a contact list of veterinarian and pet care organizations; information on your pet’s feeding routine and any behavioral issues; comfort toys; and a blanket.
  3. Display a pet rescue decal on your front door or window to let first responders know there is a pet in the house. Include your veterinarian’s contact information. 
  4. Learn where your pet likes to hide in your house when they are frightened. Finding them quickly will help you evacuate faster. 
  5. Identify a location to take your pet if you need to leave your immediate area. 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.
  6. Carry a picture of your pet in the event of separation.
  7. If you need to evacuate, consider taking a pet carrier or crate if possible for transport and safe - keeping.
Are you prepared?

Hill's has designed an informative checklist to help each of you put together your own Pet Emergency Go-Kit.  We recommend that you assist your humans in organizing your Go-Kit and we hope you never need to use it. 
Graphic courtesy of Hill’s® Pet Nutrition, Inc.


The Hill’s Food, Shelter & Love® program is based on four pillars:  Volunteer, Donate, Choose and Adopt.  Hill’s Food, Shelter & Love program has already provided over $280 million worth of food to nearly 1,000 shelters, 365 days a year helping over 8 million pets find a new home.  If you'd like more information about the Hill’s Food, Shelter & Love program, visit their website.  You can also follow Hill’s on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Hill’s® Pet Nutrition, Inc. The opinions and text are all mine.

28 comments:

  1. We've got a "hurricane box" that has everything we need to evacuate or to stay after a storm. This is all great info!!

    The Florida Furkids

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  2. Wow, I had no idea there were so many potential disasters in your area! We worry lots about fires and earthquakes - and my human is not prepared enough.

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  3. It is always good to have an emergency plan in place.
    Info like this is very helpful.
    Purrs Georgia and Julie,
    Treasure and JJ

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  4. Though we don't have a lot of natural disasters in our area, we are making sure we are prepared anyways. You never know what might happen and it's best to be safe...than sorry. :)

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  5. we are lucky we live on the 2nd floor and don't have too many natural disasters around here. mom worries cause she knows she might not be able to catch Junior or Spud in an emergency

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  6. We don't have harnesses and leashes because, well we wouldn't use them at the best of times! Carriers are better. What we think is good about this area is that if something happens it's easy to get to and get help. Have you read the major earthquake threats about the Portland/Seattle areas and how those places could be without assistance for a very long time...

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  7. So sad to think of all the pets lost or displaced because of disasters. It's so good to be prepared. Thank you for this great post.

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  8. Thank you for this useful post, hope things in your State are improving now.

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  9. Excellent post, being prepared is so important.

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  10. We've had similar flood disasters where I live in recent years - it's so important to be prepared.

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  11. We are "sort of" prepared, in the TBT can collect our medical reords fast, scoops cans of food into a box, and we each have our own PTU, and he can grab a litter box and bag fast cuz they are next to the car place. Our biggest problem is that we would all go hide if he started running around.

    But we are relatively safe from natural disasters. Hurricanes generally slide around MD, we dont have tornadoes, we are too sloped for flooding, and TBT is prepared to shelter in place through rain or snow storms. And he has a big backpack for "grab and go" in the SUV.

    But being prepared is good advice.

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  12. This is such an important topic!

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  13. We are trying to be as prepared as we can be. It is so important to remember our 4-legged family members in these situations. Thank your for spreading the word!

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  14. We don't really worry about anything but earthquakes... but it's supposed to be the "big one!" Mr. N has his own emergency bag.

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  15. Very good tips here! I have shared on Twitter as well!

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  16. We had a summer of horrible fires a few years back and were on standby for evacuation. I wish we had had these tips then because it was a scramble to figure things out. Thankfully, we never got the call to evacuate. Then two years ago Boulder (and other parts of Colorado) experienced horrendous flooding but this time I was more prepared and we were high enough up that we were not terribly affected. The tips you've shared are incredibly important. Thank you!

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  17. Such great information. We are not well enough prepared as we so rarely have disasters here but a good reminder - my daughter's building had an electrical fire in the lobby area a few weeks ago. She was fine but no power, no water etc for 24 hours and stuck.

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  18. Oh wow, a thousand year flood? You never expect it, but disasters happen every year. That must have been so scary for you. It's so important to be prepared for your family & for pets. I'm so glad Hills is there to help when animal shelters becoming overwhelmed during a disaster.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

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  19. Disasters aren't something we often think about being in AZ. It barely rains, we don't have earthquakes and tornadoes and hurricanes don't happen here. BUT you never know! I have several first aid kits around my house, as well as a sticker on my doors letting emergency crews know that there are pets inside. I also have lots of crates, leashes and harnesses sitting around. The only thing I'm not prepared with is a picture of my pets - they are all on my phone! I guess I need a hard copy in my wallet!

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  20. It is really important to be prepared! These are awesome tips and I love that Hill's helps out animal shelters and victims of natural disasters!

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  21. This is great info and I had never thought about figuring out my dogs' favorite places in our house. I'm in earthquake country and had someone point out to me once that even though my fencing is secure, I need to make sure my dogs have their tag info on them at all times even in my own back yard in case "The Big One" hits and my fences fall down. That was a sobering thought. Both dogs are microchipped but I don't know if the general population would think to take displaced dogs to get IDed. Thanks for the informative post. Now if I can figure out a game plan for my horse (he's at a boarding stable).

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  22. That flood was really scary! I'm glad that you ladies weren't harmed in it. It is great that Hill's has jumped in to fill the needs of pets in disaster zones.
    -Purrs from your friends at www.PlayfulKitty.net

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  23. Great tips! I also live in the South in Georgia and we are prone to many of the same disasters as South Carolina.

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  24. Awesome! You guys have some of the worst weather in the country too!

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  25. As a pet parent who has had to undergo 2 emergency evacuations due to flooding (and both times our home was spared), this is a timely post. Thank goodness for info like this to help!

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