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Prepping For Your Animals - Incidentals

Many of us have grab-and-go emergency kits. These are variously called GOOD (Get Out Of Dodge), GAG Bags (Grab and Go), or BOB (Bug Out Bags). If you don't have one prepared for each member of your family, then you should take a moment to visit here and take a look at what should be inside each kit. Each kit will, of course, be personalized (you wouldn't give your 3 year old a handgun or ammunition) to each member of your family. An AWOL bag is somewhat larger than a BOB. The link will give you a video of what is typically in an AWOL (absent without leave) bag.

Don't forget to build a bag for your animal friend(s)! You can use the same guidelines for food and water. Have some means of water filtration. We can hold our noses and drink chemically treated water. Animals will probably not drink chemically treated water. Katadyn makes a relatively inexpensive sport bottle filter that will help you and your pet have fresh, clean water.

Include copies of their pedigree papers (if there are any), shot and veterinary records, licenses, medications, dietary supplements and something that will tell people who the animal belongs to (you) and how to contact you if you and your friend become separated. Pack all papers in a heavy duty zip-loc style bag for water proofing.

If you are unable to pack meds or other supplies (including a pet's favorite toy), attach a list to the outside of the BOB listing the items you will need to collect and place inside the bag before you leave. This will help you to keep from forgetting something critical in a stressful time.

Pack a spare leash, collar and/or harness. Include sanitary items such as waste collection bags. If there is room, include that special toy the animal is familiar with.

Most bag guidelines specify gloves for humans, you can substitute dog booties especially if your canine friend is not used to long periods of walking. These will also protect their paws in cases where the ground may be littered with sharp debris after a tornado, earthquake, or other disaster event.

Don't forget to pack a collapsible food and water bowel. If you think water will be in short supply, pack nontoxic sanitary wipes to clean out their bowls after use. Most babywipes fit this category.

You may also want to include tag silencers for your dog's tags. These silencers may prove to be helpful depending on your situation. It will keep your pet from possibly annoying other stressed out people who may be looking for something to lash out at. You may need to pass through an area as quietly as possible.

Think you'll have to carry a bag for each of your animals? Guess again. Larger animals (medium size dogs on up to horses) are perfectly capable to carrying their own BOB. You can get an idea of packs for dogs from Wolf Packs.

If you are in a flood prone area, you may want to consider purchasing a floatation device for your friend. Make sure it has a grab handle or built in harness. You will need a place to attach a lead.

If you have animals that get groomed and have much of their natural fur removed for aesthetic reasons, you may want to get a coat for your animal.

If your animal is small (such as a cat or ferret) and you intend to crate the animal for your own sanity and the animal's safety, prepare the BOB and store the bag in the crate. Purchase a few nylon straps found at many sporting, and camping supply stores. Use these straps to attach the BOB to the crate after your friend is secured inside. These straps can also be used to fashion a carrying handle so that you will be able to manipulate both the crate and the BOB with one hand.

Two of the last items that you should include (if not in your BOB, then theirs) are some manner of erecting a shelter, and sunscreen. A tarp and some paracord will be much appreciated if there is little shade from the hot sun, or no shelter from rain. The sunscreen is for your fair haired friends. Animals with white fur are prone to sunburn, especially on their nose and ears.

This site Pets For The Environment has an extensive writeup on sunscreen for animals. Please take a moment to check out their investigation of 1000 (yes, one thousand) different sunscreens.

The one recommended by Pets For The Environment is VetOne UVet Sunscreen Lotion.

preparednesspro said...
February 18, 2009 at 11:59 AM  

Having a carrying case for my cat is a brilliant idea that I had not otherwise considered. Since she's all over the place in the car anyway, the stress of an emergency certainly wouldn't help things...

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