July 2, 2021
Prepare now for the 2021 hurricane season
According to the National Hurricane Center at the National Weather Service, the Atlantic Hurricane season starts June 1 and runs through November 30. Learn more here. Forecasters from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) predict a hyper-active hurricane season this year, with approximately 20 named storms and 8 hurricanes. Clay Humane urges animal owners to prepare for the dangers associated with hurricane season.
“Families often dash to the store when the news reports a hurricane, collecting necessities moments before the arrival of a hurricane,” said Dr. Christian Broadhurst, senior staff veterinarian at Clay Humane. “In this rush, they may not get the opportunity to completely prepare for their dog or cat’s needs. This is particularly hard for families with birds, reptiles, fish and other pets with unique needs.”
To prevent your pets from being ill-prepared for hurricane season, Clay Humane recommends the follow tips
- Microchip Animals
Pets are at high risk of becoming lost during a natural disaster. Out of fear, they may run away or hide in unusual places. A microchip contains a distinctive number that can be read by a scanner. The chip is embedded under the animal’s skin and can assist with detecting misplaced pets. Make sure to register your pet’s microchip number.
- Update Your Contact Information
Make it easier to reunite with your lost pet by keeping your animal’s identification tags updated with your contact information. The tag should include your pet’s name, your phone number and address. Be sure to update this information with the microchip company as well.
Build a disaster kit and include the following things to build an emergency kit for your pets
- Animal first-aid kit
- Four-day supply of pet food and medications
- Food and water bowls
- Litter and / or disposable garbage bags for pet waste
- Spare collars, leashes and harnesses
- Copies of your pet’s medical records
- Pictures of your animal in the event you become separated
- For birds, carry a spray bottle with water for their wings. Carry a strong bowl for reptiles to soak in and ample bedding for small pets like guinea pigs or hamsters.
Have the right gear
Distinguish which carriers you will take in the event of a natural disaster. Choose a carrier that provides your pet with ample space to move in the event of lengthy evacuation drives. Put your name and your pet’s name on the carrier. For birds, bring a perch or paper towels for easy sanitizing and a timed feeder to ensure your bird eats on schedule.
Know where to go
Some local evacuation shelters allow pets, but some do not. Know where you and your pets can go in the event you need to evacuate. For more information about pet-friendly shelters in your area and types of pets permitted visit:
- Clay County Disaster Preparedness
- Jacksonville Pet Emergencies
- St. Johns County Hurricane Evacuation Shelter Locations
- Nassau County Pet-Friendly Disaster Evacuation Shelters
Study evacuation routes
Get familiar with your evacuation routes and try to memorize them, as your GPS may not work well as a storm approaches or leaves. If you cannot find a shelter nearby, find boarding facilities outside of the evacuation area.