Nov 10, 2009

I've thought about this for the last few days, whether or not I should make this posting. But, finally came to the decision to do so, as it weighs heavy on my heart.

The other day, when there was a fire in an apartment complex near me I got to thinking about the pet clinic nearby. I worried if they were safe and actually got in my car to go check. There were employees there, and the fire was not close enough to do them harm. But, I wondered if there were pets involved in the apartment fire. Eight families were without homes that night. I know that under the same circumstances I would put my cats  into my car before my purse or family photos or my grandmother's antique vase.

Of course if an owner isn't home when the fire starts and his pets are outside, there isn't much he can do, except hope someone would find the cat and turn them in to a local shelter. If your pets live indoors and you are not home and there is a fire, how would the fire department know to rescue them?  You can put a sign on or near your front door. "In case of emergency, please rescue my 3 cats inside" I have seen stickers that people put in their windows saying this. Give a call to your local fire department and ask what they would do. Do they have any of those stickers? Can they register that you have cats in your home?

All this being said, I just had such an epiphany about it. We make preparations for disaster. Don't we? We put away food, water, medicine and blankets for those times when flood, fire, earthquake, ice storm, etc. occur. We make plans for where the family will go if we can't be in our homes. But, when we are making all those plans, do we include our animals? Not me. the thought hadn't crossed my mind except knowing I would grab my cats and put them in the car first, as I mentioned.

When I put aside canned goods and emergency lights and bandages in the garage, I didn't put away any cat food. In case of a true disaster, my cat will be one of those ending up in the shelters,

Ninja and  Bambi wear collars with ID tags. I cant keep a collar on Spyder because he seems to be double jointed enough that he gets his jaw caught underneath it. I have even tried a harness for him. But he did the same thing. So, if there were an emergency and he got out, I would have to trust that his computer chip would get him back home to me.

Just putting my thoughts on all this out here. Have you thought about your own disaster preparedness? What plans have you made for your pets? Do you have a safe cage or carrier for each pet if you have to evacuate your home? Do you have collars with your phone number on them? Do they have computer chips? Who will take care of them if you are not able to? How will they be kept safe? How will you prove they are yours if they have no ID on them? Call your local shelter and ask a few questions. What are their emergency plans? How long would they keep a stray cat, if that's what they thought yours was? If your cat turned up and had ID on him, how long would they keep him if they couldn't get in touch with you by telephone?


tonyb said...

By Elizabeth Munroz
Have you thought about your own disaster preparedness?
What does anyone expect when the public does not have access to basic rights and information?

Do you have a moment to look over important disaster information? US President Obama did.

One of the most important factors in disaster preparedness/recovery is to be informed:

When the dust settles, who will carry the mantle for disaster survivors? This should help understanding: What do you expect in case of an insured loss? Are You Disaster Ready (hurricane, tornado, earthquake, flood, fire, etc.)?

Thank you for any consideration you may give.

Purrfect Haven said...

.. you touched a nerve, have quietly been brewing thoughts (and worries) over the very thing. Time to act. Thanks for bringing it to my immediate attention. By feline boys need to be catered for beyond me. Helen, D&B

Anonymous said...

I never thought much about this, even after the Hurricane Katerina disaster. I heard about animals being saved. Didn't think about it in terms of my own pets. thanks for posting this.