Preparing Your Pets - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Preparing Your Pets

One of the best things you can do to ensure your pet’s safety is to keep identification on him or her at all times. Visible I.D is the best. For dogs and cats that means a collar with a tag that has your phone number (s).
Rabbits and ferrets can wear a harness with a tag. Microchips can be helpful, but not everyone has a scanner and scanners do not always read the chip, so they are best used as a supplement to visible identification. Rabbits, dogs, and cats can also be tattooed, and birds can be banded. Also, place identification (your name and phone number) on all pet carriers and carriers and cages before a disaster.
Train your pets obedience can make a big difference in an emergency situation. Dogs and cats (birds, rabbits and ferrets if possible) should come when their name is called and when they hear dry food or treats rattled. Each mealtime, shake a container of treats of dry food; call your pet’s name and whistle. Eventually they will associate the sounds you make with food, and will come when called.
Place signs in windows or doors letting firefighters and other emergency personnel know how many pets are inside and what types of animals they are.
Practice putting your pets into their carriers, and loading them and your emergency kits into the car. Practice until you can evacuate in just a few minutes. Give your pets treats after all drills are completed.
During the Disaster
*Stay calm. Your pets react to your emotions and actions
*If there is a possibility of an evacuation order, leave right away. It is always better to be safe than sorry, and evacuation takes longer than you imagine.
*Cover pet carriers with thin blankets or towels. The dark and quiet will help keep pets calm.
After the Disaster
*Try to return to your pets normal routine as quickly as possible
*Pets may wish to stay near you more than normal- allow them to do so.
*Let pets sleep as much as they want as they recover from the stress.
*Keep a close eye on pets for signs of illness. Birds, rodents, and reptiles can be particularly susceptible to respiratory illnesses following a stressful event.
*If you notice behavioral changes that do not improve a few days, contact the Calcasieu Parish Animal Services and Adoption Center , your veterinarian, or a professional behaviorist for advice.

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