Tips for Pet Owners


For each pet you will need a carrier or crate that is large enough to allow your pet to stand and turn around. Crate training pets in advance is recommended.

  • Be sure each pet has current vaccinations, especially rabies and is wearing a collar with current tags. Tie a leash to the door of the crate. A second method of identification such as a tattoo or implanted microchip is helpful should you become separated.
  • If you know you will stay at home, prepare an easily cleaned quiet room, or bathroom away from windows to keep your pet during the storm.
  • If you know you will evacuate to a public shelter, arrange to board your pet at a kennel, animal clinic, or dependable friend's home. Shelters will only accept service animals for disabled individuals.
  • If you know you will evacuate to a hotel/motel, call first to locate one that allows pets. The Automobile Club of America publishes a book (for members only) that lists hotels/motels accepting pets. Call 1 (800) 596-2228 for  information.
  • For each pet, you will need to have a two-week supply of food, treats, medications, and water.  Check with your veterinarian if your pet is on a special diet.
  • To handle pet waste, have enough newspaper, plastic bags, cleaner, and disinfectants.


  • Noise from a storm can be frightening for a pet. If possible, keep the pet within sight of the family.
  • Keep a good supply of newspapers for your pet's sanitary needs. For easier cleaning, keep the pet in the bathroom, utility room, or enclosed garage.
  • Feed your pet moist or canned food to preserve water.


  • Remember, public shelters will not take pets! They will, however, accept service animals for the disabled.
  • Bring your pet indoors to a prepared safe area.
  • Leave pet food in sturdy containers accessible to pet.
  • Birds must eat daily, and will need special food dispensers in the cage. Boarding is recommended if possible.
  • For pet drinking water, fill the bathtub use non-spillable containers. If you leave your pet in the bathroom, disinfect the toilet bowl, flush well, and leave the lid open.
  • Keep small pets confined and away from cats and dogs. Never leave a cat with a dog, even if they get along.
  • Make sure your pet wears a collar with a tag. Use a break away collar for cats.