When planning for emergencies, don’t forget your furry family members.
Fires, floods, earthquakes and other natural disasters force thousands of Americans to hit the road in a hurry each year. And while keeping a bug-out bag for your household’s human residents is crucial, it’s just as important to accommodate your pets, too. Experts offer the following advice:
>> Before disaster strikes, think of where you would go with your pet: A relative’s or friend’s house? A hotel? A shelter? Federal law requires local emergency management teams to address the issue of people with pets; find out what resources may be available in your area.
>> Create a kit for each pet that includes, at a bare mininum, enough supplies for 72 hours: food, water, medications, documentation, sanitation supplies, extra leashes, a blanket and paper towels. Also include a collar with your pet’s name plus your name and contact info.
>> Always place your pet in a crate or carrier when an emergency hits; if you have multiple pets, put them in separate enclosures. Even normally chill animals can become panicky or scared under abnormal conditions.
>> If you’re going to ride it out, find the safest room in your house (one without windows, for starters) and keep your emergency prep supplies there. Secure all exits so your pets can’t escape.
>> If you do have to evacuate, do not leave your pet behind. There’s no guarantee you’ll be able to find each other later on—or that he or she will be able to survive without you. Consider having your pet microchipped to make recovery easier if you are separated, and keep a photo of your pet(s) with you.
California Pet Stores Can
Only Sell Rescue Animals
Goodbye puppy mills, at least in the Golden State: A California law that went into effect this year requires pet stores to only sell dogs, cats and rabbits obtained from shelters or non-profit rescue groups.
“This is a big win for our four-legged friends, of course,” said Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell at the time the legislation, AB 485, was passed in 2017. But, O’Donnell added, the law also helps “California taxpayers, who spend more than $250 million annually to house and euthanize animals in our shelters.”
Store owners now have to provide records of origin for their charges or face a $500-per-animal fine. Individual owners can still buy from breeders.
Bike Safely with Your Buddy
Trying to ride a bike while holding your dog’s leash is good way to get one or both of you injured, especially if you’ve got a lunger on your hands. Bike Tow Leash’s low attachment point and sturdy construction provide stability. And BTL won’t pull on the dog’s neck, making the experience more enjoyable for rider and animal. biketowleash.com