When disaster strikes, it is important to be prepared. You have a “GoBag” for yourself and your family, but don’t forget your pets!
In addition to their medications and other supplies, include at least a 4-day supply of pet food and water for each pet in the event you have to leave your home.
Kibble can be transferred to an airtight container but will stay fresher if you can leave it in bags instead. Consider storing several small bags in the 3-lb to 5-lb size in your kit. Smaller bags can be packed easily. Large bags can be difficult to fit in a vehicle, heavy to move, and subject to puncture.
Canned food is easier to keep fresh, so consider including cans in your kit. If your pet is not used to eating canned food, it is easy to start transitioning now by feeding some canned food every day.
Besides freshness, cans have many advantages. Hydration is vital for humans and pets, especially under stress. Feeding canned food to dogs and cats is an easy way to increase their daily water intake. This is especially important during hot weather.
Also, canned foods can be purchased in stackable cardboard cases so they’re easy to store for prolonged periods. Cans provide the longest shelf life of any packaging, often offering a 3-year expiration date. So the cans you add to your kit today might still be good a couple of years from now.
As an added bonus, cans are infinitely recyclable while most pet food bags are not.
Be sure to carry cans that are complete and balanced meals, with all the daily vitamins and minerals added.
Other items to pack (print this checklist, and check off each item once it is in your pet preparedness kit):
__ Photocopied veterinary records
__ Rabies certificate
__ Medical summary
__ Prescriptions for medications
__ Proof of ownership or adoption records
__ Pet description(s) and recent photographs
__ Waterproof container for documents
__ Microchip information
__ Food and water dishes
__ Feeding instructions
__ Medications with instructions
__ Leash, collar with ID and harness
__ Litter and litterbox for cats
__ Comforting toys and treats
__ Carrier with bedding, blanket, or towel
__ Pet first aid book and first aid kit
__ Cleaning supplies for accidents
__ 4 day supply of pet food per pet
__ Plenty of water