National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day

May 6, 2010

“The Las Vegas Valley is not immune to emergencies that could impact families and their pets,” said Dr. Debbie White of Lone Mountain Animal Hospital and a member of the veterinary unit of the Medical Reserve Corps of Southern Nevada. Local emergencies could include a fire, flood or earthquake, each of which could mean families must evacuate. “More than 90 percent of pet owners say they would take their pets if an evacuation order was given. Pets should be included when making emergency plans for the entire family. Pet owners are encouraged to create a kit for their pets as part of their family preparedness kits.”

Dr. White recommends the kit include the pet carrier or cage, supplies for three weeks, a photo and medical history. Information about preparedness for pets is included on the American Veterinary Medical Association’s website.

Family emergency supplies can be contained in a large trashcan, a backpack or a suitcase. An emergency preparedness kit can be put together over several months by adding just one or two items to a grocery list. A calendar is available on the Southern Nevada Health District’s website to help develop an emergency preparedness kit, which should include food, water, a first aid kit, tools, copies of important documents, clothing and bedding, medications, and pet supplies. When the clocks are changed, review the kit and replace items that are close to their expiration dates. Rotate items in and out of the kit as needed. A household preparedness kit should include enough supplies to sustain everyone in the household for up to three weeks.

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