What to Pack in an Emergency "Go Bag" for Your Pet

Emergencies come in many forms, and they may require everything from a brief absence from your home to permanent evacuation. Each type of disaster requires different measures to keep your entire family safe, including your pets. So, the best thing you can do for yourself and your pets is to be prepared. As you prepare your family for an emergency, don't forget about your favorite four-legged friends. 


Pets are members of the family too and to help ensure you and your family are prepared for a natural disaster, experts recommend having an emergency plan and a well-stocked disaster supply kit.

 

Having an emergency “go bag” filled with necessary documents and supplies can help ensure your pet stays safe in a disaster that may involve storms, flooding, downed power lines, and debris.

 

Pack emergency items ahead of harsh weather so you’ll be able to leave quickly without forgetting any important supplies. Your emergency go kit should be easy for you to transport in the event of an evacuation.

 

Emergency Go Bag Packing List

A Goldendoodle sits in the hatch of an SUV with their dog bed in tow waiting for their owner to arrive

Here’s what to pack in your emergency go bag, according to the ASPCA.

 

Pet first aid kit:

This includes much of the same types of items you would find in a human medical kit: tweezers, gauze, bandages, scissors, alcohol, antiseptic cream, etc. 

 

Canned/dry food/ treats:

(7+ days worth) and collapsible feeding bowls.

 

Bottled water:

(3-7 days worth) and collapsible water bowls.

 

Spare collar/harness with ID tag, rabies tag, and a leash:

Because we all lose important things sometimes, especially when we’re stressed! Be sure to have proper tags and identification on the extra collar.

 

Folding crate or pet carrier:

Depending on the size of the pet and the size of the emergency, pet carriers or crates may be invaluable. It will help keep your pet contained and controlled, especially in a vehicle.

 

Blanket or an easy to carry bed:

A blanket or some other bedding your pet is familiar with will go a long way to keeping him as calm as possible. A blanket can also serve to hold an angry cat! We love our PupRug™ Portable Orthopedic Dog Bed, of course. 

 

This dog bed combines the comfort of human-grade memory foam with the flexibility that comes with travel. Simply roll it up, tie it, and go! This bed is perfect for road trips, spur of the moment car rides, and any natural disaster you may encounter. Always keep a bed like this in your pet’s emergency go bag.

 

Photocopy and/or USB drive of health records and your vet’s contact info:

If you wind up at a shelter, it is likely they will not let your pet in without proof that they are  up-to-date on all vaccinations. Keep a copy of important vet records in your pets' go bags and update them as needed.

 

Medication and flea treatment

Be sure to grab any medications your pet takes regularly on the way out the door!

 

If You Evacuate

A cat perches on a window sill in front of a plant with an "Animals Inside!" sticker on the window.

Additionally, the ASPCA recommends putting Animals Inside alert stickers on your home windows to let rescue personnel know you have a pet in the home. Write “Evacuated” across the sticker if you evacuate with your animals.

 

Be sure to evacuate early so that you and your pets will be able to get to safety before the disaster hits. If you are sheltering at home, hunker down in a protected room or basement and make sure to have your emergency gear on hand.

 

When an emergency strikes, your pets need to count on you for protection. By prepping early, you can be sure that your pets are safe, prepared, and ready for anything.

 

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written by

Samantha Thompson