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Protect Your Pets in an Emergency

Animal Shelters

Make plans to ensure your pet's safety before, during, and after an emergency. Find out what your community's plans and resources are for protecting pets in an emergency.

Important resources for planning how to ensure your pets' safety before an emergency:

  • American Red Cross
    Visit the Red Cross' Web site on Animal Safety, which is a joint effort of the Red Cross and the Humane Society.
  • American Veterinary Medical Association
    AMVA offers a variety of resources to assist veterinarians, animal owners, and others interested in the well-being of animals to prepare for animal safety in the event of a disaster.
  • Emergency Animal Rescue Service
    EARS responds to disasters by sending trained volunteers to rescue, shelter, feed, groom, exercise, and provide tender loving care for any displaced companion animals (dogs, cats, etc.), wildlife, and livestock during the duration of a disaster with no charge to the community. Visit the EARS Web site for information on protecting cats, dogs, horses, and other companion animals from disaster.
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency
    FEMA is the federal agency that leads the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident.
  • Florida State Agricultural Response Team
    SART offers a downloadable PowerPoint presentation “Pets & Disasters: Personal Planning.”
  • Food and Drug Administration
    FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine offers the fact sheet “Protecting Pets in a Disaster.” This fact sheet provides tips on preparing for a disaster and handling animals during and after a disaster.
  • Local Animal Shelters
    Because most emergency shelters do not admit pets, local animal shelters may be able to offer advice on planning how to protect your pets if you are asked to evacuate your home. You can search for local shelters on the Pets 911 Web site.
  • Local Government Animal Control or Service Agencies
    Local government animal control or service agencies can provide guidance on how to protect your pets in an emergency.
  • National Animal Poison Control Center
    In emergency situations, pets could be poisoned by exposure to harmful chemicals, products, or foods. For information on protecting your pets, visit the Animal Poison Control Center’s Web site. If you suspect that your pet has been poisoned, call toll-free 1-888-426-4435 (calls are answered 24 hours a day, every day).
  • Pet Travel and Lodging Resources
    Most emergency shelters do not take pets. Before an emergency, plan where you will take your family and pets if you are ever asked to evacuate your home. There are a number of organizations that offer advice and resources for traveling with pets, including searchable lists of lodging establishments that accept pets.

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