Sunday, October 4, 2009

Don't leave your pets behind

I come from a family of cat lovers. I remember hearing stories of how my grandmother packed her pet cat in a bayong (straw bag) when they were fleeing from the war. Coming to think of it I don't think I recall a time in my life when we didn't have a cat in our home. It's funny because even when I am away from home I am constantly on the look out for cats... Yes, I think I am a little cat obsessed, don't you think? haha!

Our pets play a very important role in our lives and we should always be thinking of their safety - not only during normal days but also in times of calamity. I really was very sad to hear so many reports of pets dying in the flood.

Anyway here are a few safety tips taken from PETA

Before a disaster:

  • All animals should have collars with identification tags. Make sure you have a current photo of your companion animal for identification purposes.
  • Hotels often lift "no pets" policies during emergencies, but keep a list of hotels that accept companion animals just in case. Include the Philippine Animal Welfare Society's (PAWS) phone number, (02) 475-1688, in your list of emergency numbers. It might be able to provide information during a disaster.
  • Keep packed a carrier, lease, extra animal food, and any other supplies that you will need so that you can grab them easily if you need to evacuate in a hurry.

In case pets are left behind:

  • Do not tie animals outside, leave them caged, or keep them in a vehicle unattended. Leave them in a secure area inside your home.
  • Leave out at least 10 days' supply of water. Fill every sink, bowl, pan, and plastic container with water and set them on the floor. Do not leave just one container because it may spill. If your toilet bowl is free of chemical disinfectants, leave the toilet seat up to provide animals with one more source of water, but do not let that be the only source.
  • Leave out at least 10 days' supply of dry food. Canned food will go rancid quickly.
  • If you can't get to your home, contact a reliable neighbor or friend to check on animals and get them out, if possible. Provide specific instructions for care.

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