Island Hammock Pet Hospital®
and Boarding Villa
Dr. Martha Edwards, Dr. Marta Pawluk & Dr. Veronica Gomez

Marathon, after Rita - 10/2005



Eye wall of Wilma, Ft. Lauderdale




ISLAND HAMMOCK PET HOSPITAL'S 
HURRICANE PREPARATION GUIDE FOR PET OWNERS

  1. Be prepared for yourself.As your pet’s guardian, your pets are dependent on you and the decisions you make. When Hurricane Katrina made landfall on the Gulf Coast in 2005, FEMA reported approximately 600,000 pets were either killed or left without shelter.
  2. In addition to advance microchipping your pet, have your pet wear a collar with ID tag and rabies tag. If someone finds your pet they can locate you without a microchip reader. Carry pictures of your pet to aid in finding a lost pet. 

  3. Make sure your pet is current on all vaccines.
  4. Visit the Monroe County Emergency Services website at http://www.monroecountyem.com/index.aspx?NID=123 to view pet friendly shelters and rules.
  5. Prepare an evacuation pack:
    1. Food and water for two weeks and bowls. Keep dry food sealed in waterproof containers.
    2. Kitty litter and litter trays for cats and plenty of plastic poop bags for dogs.
    3. Carry a copy of your pet’s vaccination and medical records.
    4. A comfortable pet carrier and leashes. 
    5. A 30 day supply of your pet’s medication including heartworm, flea and tick prevention.
    6. Comfortable bedding that your pet is familiar with. If too bulky, bring towels.
    7. A muzzle if your pet will become aggressive around other animals.
    8. Your veterinarian contact info and emergency responder phone numbers.
  6. The preparation for a storm and possible evacuation will likely be stressful on your pet. Make special efforts to minimize the stress caused to your pet.
    1. Bring extra food motivators like treats.
    2. Bring familiar toys.
    3. Watch for common signs of fear; hiding, trembling or shaking, sudden urination or defecation, pacing, chewing, digging, barking or howling, and an abnormal clinging behavior around the pet’s owner. 
    4. Take time to comfort your pet often when your pet is fearful.
    5. Pet owners can also create a safe haven when the pet feels threatened; small spaces, such as a closet or their crate. A towel or blanket draped over the carrier can often help a scared pet feel more secure.
    6. If evacuating to a mainland motel/hotel, www.petswelcome.com/ and www.bringfido.com will help you find pet friendly lodging and are location specific.
  7. When evacuating:
    1. Don’t wait too long to get your cat in its carrier. It may take some time to capture a scared cat. Visit www.catvets.com/cat-owners/behavior-and-care-tips/getting-your-cat-to-the-vet to learn tips for transporting your cat and turning your carrier into a home away from home.
    2. Use the FDOT 511 Travelers Information System to get current evacuation information.
    3. Try to make your evacuation location as friendly as possible for your pet.
  8. Don’t let you pet outdoors after the storm passes until you know it is safe. Fallen electrical lines, glass and debris shards, storm surges, flooding and unseen hazards can injure your pet at a time when care may not be immediately available.
  9. If you have any questions, call us at (305) 852-5252.

    Click here to download and print a copy of this guide.

Island Hammock Pet Hospital®
(305) 852-5252  •  98175 Overseas Hwy, Key Largo
Upper Keys Favorite Pet Hospital - for Good Reason
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