Create An Evacuation Plan For Your Pets
I remember when I first heard on the radio that Superior was being evacuated because of the Marshall Fire. I had just finished lunch in Longmont, there was terrible wind gusts and also reports of trucks blowing over. I wasn't sure I believed Superior was evacuating because that news just didn't make any sense to me. I decided to head South on Main St. and when I reached the clearing I could see the smoke already blowing into the sky. What a terrible day. With so many people at work or away from home when the evacuation orders were sent out, many pets were unfortunately home alone. Here is some solid advice for those pet owners who are home when an emergency happens to help make sure pets are evacuated safely.
An evacuation plan is a necessity for every home, especially if you live in an area where fires, earthquakes, hurricanes, flooding, and other disasters are a possibility. Many homeowners create evacuation plans for their homes and practice them with their kids, but far fewer have considered one for their pets. Take these steps to add your pets to your evacuation plan.
Assign pet evacuation to an adult. Everyone should know how to act during an evacuation, and that includes assigning one parent or adult to the pets. This allows the other parent and the children to focus on their part of the evacuation plan, so there’s no confusion during a high-stress moment when time is of the essence.
Keep evacuation maps and pet carriers readily accessible. If you need to evacuate, you should know exactly where every important item is. If you pets require carriers, keep them in a place that you can access easily.
Practice your plan. Include your pets in your home evacuation drills. It’ll help you see how they will respond and make changes to your plan if necessary. Getting your dog out of a window may not be as simple as you think!
Be prepared in case you get separated from your pets. No matter how much you drill your evacuation plan, it’s possible that a dog or cat will run off while you’re focusing on keeping your family safe. A microchip or a GPS-compatible tag can help you find your pets once it’s safe to return to the area.