|Connor on my lap. He and my other cats depend on me to take care of them.|
Earlier this month, the area where I live in Virginia was hit by snow, then sleet, then freezing rain, then rain. So ice clung to trees and power lines.
One morning at about 5, we heard a loud boom. We got up and ran to look out the window in the direction of the noise. A fire was in lighting up the ice and snow at the intersection right above our house. Flames were spewing out of the main line to the transformer, which had broken off when a tree fell over on it.
Everything turned out OK. But as I ran through the house, looking out of the windows, seeing how the flames lit up the trees around us, all I could think of was, we’ve got to get the carriers out in case we have to get out of here.
Because we would never leave without our cats.
I was reminded of that this past week when an EF3 tornado hit Appomattox County, which is the next county over from us. A tornado warning was issued for our county too, but the tornado affected and created devastation in Appomattox.
Are Larry and I prepared for a disaster? Are we prepared to pack up our cats at a minute’s notice and have everything we need to take with us? No, I admit we’re not. And I used to be a public health educator who wrote and talked about disaster preparedness.
We never know when a natural or manmade disaster will force us to shelter in place or evacuate, and we need to be ready to care for our pets.
I gathered some online resources to help us get better prepared, and I am sharing them with you in the hopes that you’ll find them helpful.
*The ASPCA website has a section on Disaster Preparedness. It provides a good list of things to consider before something happens, like who would be a good caretaker for your pets if you can’t care for them. It also offers specific information for those with horses, reptiles, birds, and small animals like gerbils.
*The American Red Cross website makes recommendations on Pets and offers a printable Pets and Disaster Safety Checklist.
*Ready.gov provides Pets and Animal Emergency Planning information and includes a video.
Are you prepared for yourself and your pets in the event of a disaster? Or are you like me and need to work on this?