Flood Warnings: Preparedness for Pets and People

December 8, 2015 - Portland, OR - Monday set new rainfall records throughout parts of Oregon and Washington, and more stormy weather is expected throughout the week, according to the National Weather Service. Counties throughout northwest Oregon and southwest Washington are under flood advisories. The Oregon Humane Society is on standby to help people and pets in need, and provides the following tips to help prepare for the whole family-including pets.

Assemble a pet survival kit and be prepared to evacuate with your pets:
During an evacuation, you'll need a sturdy harness and leash for each dog and a carrier for each cat. In choosing a cat carrier, choose one that is large enough to serve as a temporary apartment for your cat.

Pre-pack your pet's kit:
Prepare your pet's kit in a backpack for ease in transportation and include supplies for at least one week.

Things to pack:

Dry food
Drinking water
Manual can opener for any canned food
Clumping cat litter + small litter box, litter scoop
Plastic bags for waste disposal
Serving dishes
Bedding, favorite toys (if room)

Pet first aid and health records:
A pet first aid kit is essential. Include any medications and medical records (stored in a waterproof container). Include information on feeding
schedules, medical conditions, behavior problems, and the name and number of your veterinarian in case you have to foster or board your pets.

Tag, microchip, and photograph your pets! Current pet identification is the single most important thing you can do to help ensure that you will be reunited with a lost pet. Make certain your pet (even an indoors-only cat) is wearing a collar with visible identification tags with your phone number.

TIP: if your mobile phone has a camera, take and store photos of your pets on your mobile phone.

Get to know your neighbors:
Your neighbors may be home when a disaster hits and may be your best resource for evacuating your pets if you are away and unable to reach your home.

Have an alternative-shelter plan for your pets:
If you must evacuate your home, do not leave your pets behind. Typically, only service animals are permitted inside emergency relief centers for people. Therefore, you will need to have a separate shelter plan for your pets.

Check with friends and family who live outside your immediate area to see if they would be willing to help shelter your pets.

Contact hotels and motels outside your local area to check their policies on accepting pets and restrictions on number, size and species. Ask if "no pet" policies can be waived in an emergency. Keep a list of pet-friendly places, including phone numbers, with your disaster supplies.

Make a list of boarding facilities and veterinarians who could shelter animals in an emergency-be sure to include 24-hour phone numbers.

Be prepared to shelter pets in need:
Giving temporary shelter to misplaced pets during a disaster saves lives. If you do take in a lost dog or cat, make sure to let rescue organizations know so that the animal can be reunited with its family once the immediate danger has passed.

Help emergency workers help your pets:
Place a "pets inside" rescue sign or sticker on your front window or door to let emergency responders know that pets are inside your home. Make sure the sticker is visible to rescue workers, and that it includes the types and number of pets in your household and your veterinarian's phone number.

If you evacuate with your pets, (if time allows) write "EVACUATED" across the stickers so rescue workers don't delay by looking for pets who have already been evacuated.

More resources available online:

.         Emergency preparedness and rescue information from OHS -

.         Flood preparedness tips from Ready.gov:

.         Severe weather alerts:

.         Latest news and preparedness tips from Portland Emergency
Management: http://www.portlandoregon.gov/pbem/46475

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The Oregon Humane Society is the Northwest's oldest and largest humane society, with one of the highest adoption rates in the nation. OHS receives no government funds for its adoption, education and animal cruelty investigation programs. Visit oregonhumane.org<http://www.oregonhumane.org/> for more information.