QUINCY, Mass., Sept. 2, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- South Shore veterinarian Dr. Meg Connelly is urging pet owners to include pets when planning for emergencies like tropical storms and power outages. According to the veterinarian, families often forget to include pets in emergency preparedness planning and are caught unprepared when a storm or emergency strikes. She advises pet owners to have at least three to seven days worth of food and water on-hand for their pets. Pet carriers, leashes, medical records, microchip information and pet meds should also be ready for an evacuation.
"Tropical storms can cause power outages and flooding," said Dr. Connelly. "Many Quincy and Milton pet owners simply forget to prepare for a storm emergency. This can mean the pet owners and their pets are caught unprepared when a storm does strike."
The veterinarians at the clinic have created an emergency preparedness checklist to help pet owners. The pet veterinary clinic recommends that pet owners have at least three to seven days' worth of food and water on-hand. Pack a can opener for canned food along with a portable radio and flashlight with fresh batteries. Additionally, the clinic advises owners to have carriers that are large enough to comfortably house pets in the event of an evacuation. Cat owners should have carriers large enough to fit the litter box and two small dishes. Each pet should have leashes, collars or harnesses marked with the pet's identification ready for possible transportation. A file with a photo copy of each pet's medical records, microchip information, and any medications should be ready to go, said the South Shore veterinarian.
"In the event of an evacuation, pet owners should make arrangements with friends or relatives to provide care for their pets if a shelter cannot accept them," said Dr. Connelly. "No pets should ever be left alone at home without supervision and care."
Dr. Connelly also cautioned that a tropical storm may cause a pet owner's local vet hospital to close. Pet owners should keep their veterinarian's phone number with them, as well as numbers for affiliated animal hospitals nearby.
"In a weather emergency, a cat and dog clinic may be closed and unable to provide assistance to animals," said Dr. Connelly. "This is especially true for widespread power outages. Pet owners should have a basic pet veterinary emergency kit with bandages and triple antibiotic ointments, prepared in case they cannot reach an animal clinic."
"No disaster plan is complete without including pets in the plan," said Dr. Connelly. "Pet owners who need assistance planning should contact our website at www.willardvet.com and click on Pet Health Alerts for an informational video by the AVMA."
Willard Veterinary Clinic 1-888-667-5235