NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – “Before Katrina hit we hadn’t had a major event for many, many years, a lot of people’s lifetimes. Now we have many more plans, we’re much more organized about it, but there were people who left their pets and never found those pets again,” says Robin Beaulieu Director of the Jefferson Parish Animal Shelter.
Since then, a people/pet evacuation plan has been put into place to make sure the safety of every family member. If you don’t have transportation, there are pick-up points designated throughout each parish where you and your pet can evacuate together.
“There’s also special pick-ups for special needs, we also have placement for special needs animals. You can dial 3-1-1 and you can actually get registered so that in times of emergency, we’re reaching out to you and saying ‘OK Miss Brown, do you need a pick-up today? When will you be ready for your pick-up?” says Beaulieu.
You’ll need pet supplies so pack a bag that includes water bowls, pads, leashes etc. Your emergency back-pack ought to be stocked and ready to go before a storm hits so you can just grab and go. You need food and water for 3 to 7 days per pet in your household and don’t forget any paperwork and prescription medication you may need while you’re away from home.
“Make sure that your pet is appropriately identified, whether that’s a tag on their collar, a microchip. And a good habit to get into is to make sure your pet is crate trained. Then it doesn’t matter where you go, the disruption is less, you always have a safe, secure place for your pet to stay.”
Lastly, keep a list of hotels and call ahead. When disaster strikes a no-pet policy may be waived. “When a disaster is coming or a hurricane is coming, you’re going to find a lot of places are going to allow you to have pets. If this is a creature who you have taken on the responsibility for, that responsibility extends to disasters and making sure that they’re safe as well,” says Beaulieu.
- Vet contact name and number
- Vet records
- Food and water bowls
- Bottled water
- Paper towels
- Plastic baggies
- First aid kit
- Current photo
- 3-7 days of food
- Travel litter box