5 important disaster preparedness tips for cat owners

Emergency preparedness is always a wise strategy for many different potential scenarios. Natural disasters from floods to fires to violent storms and a host of other calamities are more common than ever and responsible homeowners will be ready to face such challenges to keep their families safe and sound.

Included in many families are beloved pets such as cats and dogs, two of the most prevalent indoor pets. In the event of an unfortunate event, there are several important steps to take to ensure feline safety. Here are 5 of the top disaster preparedness tips for your cat:

Up-to-date identification

Arguably the most effective means of locating a lost pet is identification. Microchips and ID tags on collars are the most popular options. A tag on a collar is a simple and affordable choice and immediately shows other people that your cat isn’t just a wandering stray. One downside is information on tags eventually fades and collars can fall off or cats can wriggle out of them. Microchips provide a permanent means of identification that can be scanned by a veterinarian or animal shelter staff.

Pet emergency kits

If you have prepared emergency kits for the people in your family, do the same for your cat. Remember to include these items: food, water, treats, medications, litter, collars and leashes, blankets, carrier, and vet information. Keep all of this organized and in a safe location.

Be shelter-savvy

We should all be aware of locations to stay during emergencies, whether it is a hotel, with family members, or at a community shelter. Be sure that your ultimate destination will welcome your cat as well. Research several pet-friendly locations, and have a few boarding sites for back-up in case your initial space fills up.

Find the closest emergency vet facility

Pets are often at great risk during emergency situations and all pet owners should maintain up-to-date information on the closest vet hospital. Better yet, gather information on at least two facilities; disasters affecting widespread areas can lead to animal hospitals filled to the brim with patients.

Post a rescue alert sticker

Rescue alert stickers are invaluable to potentially save your cat’s life in times of disaster. If you are away at the time, the sticker allows others to confirm the presence of animals in the house and boosts the chances of safe evacuation. A house fire, for example, can be deadly to pets but a rescue sticker might be the critical signal emergency workers need.