Sunday, August 12, 2018

Pet Pig Emergency Preparedness

Are you ready should there be an natural disaster; hurricane or fire? It's never too early to be prepared.

Start getting ready now! Know the area that you live in and what is prone to.

Have an In Case Of Fire sticker on your your home. This sticker lets people know the kind and number of pets that are inside your house in case something should happen and you are not home. If you are evacuated and take your pet(s) make sure to write EVACUATED across the sticker so that rescuers can move on. 
Weather proof and can be written on with a sharpie.

Make sure to ID your pet...a micro chip is the best and this can be done when they are in for their spay/neuter. Have a harness for your pig and collars for your cats and dogs and have water poof tags that are up to date with your contact info on them. A pet that has a harness or collar on it can be handled by strangers should you be separated.

But remember: the average person who finds your pet won't be able to scan for a chip, but they will probably be able to read a basic tag! And can handle with a harness or collar on.

Have a place ahead of time for your pig and other pets to go. DON'T LEAVE THEM BEHIND! Remember that not all shelters accepts pets let alone pigs, so make sure that you check this out NOW before it is needed. This is something that might be done each year at the start of fire or hurricane season.

Make arrangements and have a safe place to stay ahead of time should you need to evacuate. Talk with family and friends in all directions as to who will let you stay and bring your pig(s) and other pet(s).

Never assume that you will be allowed to bring your pet to an emergency shelter. Before a disaster hits, call your local office of emergency management to see if you will be allowed to evacuate with your pets and verify that there will be shelters in your area that take people and their pets. You can google "pet friendly shelters (your state)" and it will bring up a list. Remember that we have an unusual pet so ask to be sure they will allow pet pigs.

Contact hotels and motels outside your immediate area to find out if they accept pets. Ask about any restrictions on number, size and species. Inquire if a "no pet" policy would be waived in an emergency. Keep a list of animal-friendly places handy, and call ahead for a reservation as soon as you think you might have to leave your home.

Do you have someone that could come to your home and get your pig and other pets should something happen while you are away or have had an emergency of your own?

Do you have an emergency to go bag for your pig? Do you have crates, vehicles, trailers...the ability to load your pig(s) in an emergency? Are you prepared?

A basic disaster kit for your pet should include:

Food and water for at least five days for each pet, bowls and a manual can opener if you are packing canned pet food. People need at least one gallon of water per person per day. While your pet may not need that much, keep an extra gallon on hand to use if your pet has been exposed to chemicals or flood waters and needs to be rinsed.

Medications and medical records stored in a waterproof container and a first-aid kit. Litter box, litter, litter scoop and garbage bags to collect all your pets' waste. (FYI: During Irma many of my friends bought kiddie pools and put a piece of sod in it and put it in the garage. Not one of their dogs used it.)

Sturdy leashes, harnesses and carriers to transport pets safely and to ensure that your pets can't escape, should you need to evacuate. Make sure that your cat or dog is wearing a collar and identification that is up to date and visible at all times. Carriers should be large enough to allow your pet to stand comfortably, turn around and lie down. (Your pet may have to stay in the carrier for hours at a time.) Be sure to have a secure cage with no loose objects inside it to accommodate smaller pets who may also need blankets or towels for bedding and warmth as well as special items, depending on their species.

Written information about your pets' feeding schedules, medical conditions and behavior issues along with the name and number of your veterinarian in case you have to board your pets or place them in foster care.

Other useful items include:

Paper towels
Plastic trash bags
Grooming items

In 2017 and 2018 we were hit with hurricanes. 2017 not so bad, but in 2018 we had no idea exactly where Irma would it and it really didn't matter as she was huge and covered the whole state. It wasn't a matter of if she would hit, but how strong she would be when she reached us and the damage she would bring.

What I learned is that you need to be prepared. I learned that you need to know what kind of hurricane it is that's coming. Besides the classifications from 1-5 you need to know if the hurricane is expected to dump a lot of rain and/or have strong winds. This will help to determine whether you should evacuate or not. I still remember a post of a young lady that was in the Miami area, terrified by the winds and left her pig behind. Thankfully Miami was spared this time, but please don't ever leave your pet behind.

From a local meteorologist: When to evacuate and when not to during a hurricane. "I am getting a lot of questions asking about when we should evacuate. You only evacuate to escape storm surge flooding...You do not evacuate from the wind unless you live in a mobile home. Water is the killer. Wind is not. You run from water. You hide from wind."

Know if you live in a flood prone area and have an evacuation plan. Be prepared!

Know if you live in an area that is prone to fires and have an evacuation plan. Be prepared!

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