Man's Best Friend Gets Quake Ready - New York News

Man's Best Friend Gets Quake Ready

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It's 7:15 a.m. and just like the rooster crow wake-up call my Yorkie is up-and-at-em! And ouch! That is way too early for a night-shifter. Still, that's the routine at mi casa each and every morning.

I begrudgingly get up and start my way-too-early morning.  I trudge outside to take Pips for a potty. We then make our way to the kitchen for a treat. Pips begins to lap up a little water as I make my little man some breakfast.

Why does my routine matter to YOU? It matters because it gives YOU a good idea of what you'll need for YOUR pet earthquake kit. As I mark my routine I'm making a check-list of what I'd need to care for "my kids" in the event of an emergency. Per www.earthquakecountry.org we need supplies to last three days to one week. I begin with a plastic bin to store it all.

Let's look back. We started with potty. That means I'll need doggie doo-doo bags. Then we went for a treat. I toss in a small bag of dog treats. Next he wanted water. I found a fold-up canvass water bowl perfect for a back-pack kit. Then it was breakfast. Pips doesn't eat much, but he does eat. So in any quake kit you'd want food and water for your animals. The dry food stores well and if you do get canned food make sure there is a pull tab or you include a can opener.

My other dog is a whole other story. She gets an upset tummy(and worse) and eats special dog food from the vet. Let's get back to water.  WATER is the most important thing for man and man's best friend. Think: one gallon of water per day per animal.

For this story, I had the benefit of working with a rep from the American Red Cross, www.redcross.org, Hillary Anderson Preparedness Education Coordinator.

The Red Cross offers the following tips:

-Plan to take your pets with you in an evacuation. If it is not safe for you to stay, it is not safe for them either.

Know which hotels and motels along your evacuation route will accept you and your pets in an emergency. Call ahead for reservations if you know you may need to evacuate. Ask if no pet policies could be waived in an emergency.

-Most American Red Cross shelters cannot accept pets because of health and safety concerns and other considerations. Service animals that assist people with disabilities are allowed in Red Cross shelters.

-Know which friends, relatives, boarding facilities, animal shelters or veterinarians can care for your animals in an emergency. Prepare a list with phone numbers. Although your animals may be more comfortable together, be prepared to house them separately.

-Include your pets in evacuation drills so that they become used to entering and traveling in their carriers calmly.

-Make sure that your pet's vaccinations are current and that all dogs and cats are wearing collars with securely fastened, up-to-date identification. Many pet shelters require proof of current vaccinations to reduce the spread of disease.

-Consider having your pet "microchipped" by your veterinarian.

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