Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Take Care of Your Pets in Storms, Floods and Other Emergencies

What happened to Summer this season? It has been practically non-existent and replaced with major storms and floods across Australia that have affected plenty of NSW residents. Whether it is rain, hail or shine - pet owners need to claim responsibilities for their animals and consider their safety in any emergency situation. The best way to do that is to plan ahead!

“Planning ahead is critical,” states RSPCA NSW Chief Inspector David OShannessy. “Often, people have no choice but to leave their animals behind because they’ve not considered their pets as part of their evacuation plan.”

RSPCA recommends preparing an evacuation plan that includes how to maneuver your pets (boxes, leads, halters), registering and micro-chipping pets (NSW law), keeping current photos of pets, ensuring pets have collars/ tags (with owners details), alternative contact details on tag/ microchip (other than home phone numbers) and emergency pet supply kit (food, water, bowls, medication, towels). Livestock need to be monitored and moved to higher ground or fuel reduced areas. Emergency supplies of food and water should also be prepared.

Domestic animals rely on their human family to survive so leaving them behind definitely should not be an option. However, if you have no choice please leave a sign in the front window of your house or contact your local RSPCA with details about your pets so they can be rescued and cared for if necessary.

While the thought of disaster and emergency isn’t always at the forefront of your mind, taking time now to prepare helps ensure the safety of your family and pets.

More information can be found at: Bureau of Meteorology, Commonwealth Emergency Management or NSW Department of Primary Industries.

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