Avoid The Nightmare Of Not Preparing Your Pets for Hurricane Season

Believe it or not, hurricane season is once again upon us.
Preparing Your Pets for Hurricane Season

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Preparing your pets for hurricane season.

You spend the better part of the season supplying your home with shutters, batteries, flashlights, generators, radios, food, water, and other personal necessities. Unfortunately, we often tend to overlook one of the most important aspects of the family, our pets.

Avoid the painful nightmare of not preparing your pets for hurricane season by following these tips.

While conducting your hurricane shopping:

  • Always stock up on extra pet food, water, medication, and a litter pan and litter so your outdoor cat may relocate indoors.
  • Set aside plastic grocery bags and leftover newspapers for easy pet clean-up, and store supplies in a dry area with a manual can opener if needed.

During a storm, whipping winds, flying debris, and relentless rains can frighten anyone, never mind an animal naturally more sensitive to changes in the environment. When preparing your pets for hurricane season, think about crates. A crate is one place where your pet may feel safe during the ravages of a storm, but make sure it is large enough to sleep, stand up, and turn around. If he or she routinely becomes frightened during thunderstorms, you may want to speak with your vet about obtaining a mild sedative or having Benadryl available to calm nerves. Keep in mind medication may make your pet thirsty, and thereby in need of extra water and more frequent potty breaks.

When preparing your pets for hurricane season, understand that very few public shelters allow you to bring pets, so have a plan. If you decide ahead of time to evacuate, call, or visit the websites of hotels along your escape route to find out which hotels allow pets. Many non pet-friendly hotels will open their doors in an emergency as well. Be sure to inquire about size restrictions, additional fees, and any specific requirements they may have. Don’t forget to bring along current vaccination records.

preparing your pets for hurricane season, please do not even think about leaving your pets behind. They will be frightened and alone, not to mention vulnerable to the elements if damage to your home allows for an escape. Remember, all it takes is a broken window for a pet to slip away, and familiar sights and smells leading back home may no longer exist after the storm passes.

Preparing your pets for hurricane season means you won’t be caught last minute in an emergency situation and need to board your pet. Think ahead as a designated pet shelter or kennel may have availability, but strictly on a first-come, first-served basis. Boarding at a vet’s office or kennel will not guarantee anyone will be on the premises during the storm.

Since supplies will be harder to come by, when you are preparing your pets for hurricane season, you will need to gather the following items:

  • A crate
  • Vaccination records
  • Collar with ID
  • Leash
  • 7-10 day supply of food and water
  • Litter (for cats)
  • Photo
  • Towels and medications if needed.

Keep in mind that when the storm has moved on and you are ready to come home, the damage left in the wake may prevent you from returning. Preparing your pets for hurricane season also means after the storm, check your property for any upturned snakes and toads, nails, broken glass, sharp debris, or downed powerlines.

If your neighborhood has been severely damaged, walk your pet on a leash until he or she is once again familiar with the landscape. Do your part in donating pet supplies to disaster relief programs for needy animals in storm-struck areas, or perhaps visit a shelter and adopt an animal whose home may have been lost during a storm.

All pet-friendly shelters accept dogs, cats, domestic birds, rabbits, gerbils, guinea pigs, mice, and hamsters.

When preparing your pets for hurricane season, be certain to locate all of your pet friendly shelters.


17100 SW 48 Court, Miramar, FL 33027
4333 Sol Press Blvd., Coconut Creek 33073
4251 Bonaventure Blvd., Weston 33332

Service animals are permitted in General Population Shelters so long as the pet meets the requirements under Federal law.


6000 Northtree Blvd, Lake Worth, FL 33463

Only available to Palm Beach County residents who reside in a mandatory evacuation zone, in a mobile home, or in sub-standard housing. Proof of residency will be required. All pets must be accompanied by only one owner who will stay inside the Pet-Friendly Shelter.


10901 S.W. 24 Street, Miami, FL 33199
1410 NE 215 Street (County Line Road), Miami, FL 33179

Available to pet owners residing in evacuation zones, unsafe structures, or trailers. Proof of residency, vaccination, and license is mandatory.

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Visit the Florida Agriculture Department’s Website for more information.

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