A Few Pet Preparedness Tips

In a crisis situation that forces you out of your home, such as a flood or hurricane, would you take your pets with you? Many don’t as evidenced by the sensational news stories about rescuers saving pets stranded in vacant homes in the wake of a major event..

Practicality dictates you’ll have to leave the goldfish behind. However, you know how much a part of the family your pets become. You know how they react emotionally to things. For example, one of our cats runs to hide any time he hears strong winds blowing against the house, which often happens before storms.

Animals have been known to behave strangely before major storms and earthquakes. They can be quite sensitive. Be aware of this because your pets may become restless or even violent during a calamity. You may want a soft muzzle to keep your dog or cat from biting you under such circumstances.

If you find yourself relocating to a temporary shelter, but they don’t accept animals, be sure to plan ahead for alternate means of shelter for your pets. Your veterinarian or humane society may offer help or have suggestions. Your pets should definitely have up to date identification tags. If you leave pets at home, get emergency decals from the Animal Rescue Foundation to alert rescue workers there are pets in your home. Click here for more info.

You’ll want to have a bugout bag ready for your pets, just as you have a 72-hour kit for each family member. Obviously, it should include food and water. Here are a few other items you should include, especially for a longer term absence from home.


  • Bags and paper towels for disposing of waste
  • Cat litter and disposable litter trays
  • Bedding such as a favorite blanket or pillow
  • Familiar play things, toys, chew sticks, etc
  • Can opener and spoon for dispensing food
  • Appropriate clippers for trimming claws
  • Teeth cleaning supplies
  • Sturdy leash or halter
  • Secure means to tether pets so they don’t run away or get stolen
  • Medical and breeding documents in waterproof packet
  • First aid items and any extra medications, plus a book on pet first aid
  • Pet carrier or a shipping crate


You might put pet survival supplies in a big plastic bin, such as the kind you buy from Wal-Mart. You can store extra pet food in vacuum sealed buckets, just as you do for your own grain for storage. Rotate regularly as you do for your own storage food.

You can also buy ready made pet survival kits, such as those available from www.1800prepare.com, which will include many of the items listed above. Add to them as you see fit.

With careful planning and preparation, you can be ready to help your pets survive when crisis strikes. The less you have to do under stress for your pets can insure your own survival as well.


Author: John Wesley Smith

John Wesley Smith writes and podcasts from his home in Central Missouri. His goal is to help preppers as he continues along his own preparedness journey.

2 thoughts on “A Few Pet Preparedness Tips”

  1. I doubt many of us give it much thought until our pet gets hurt or sick. Then we’re too often caught unprepared.

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