Animals left behind can be injured, fall ill, starve and hamper human evacuation and rescue efforts
SACRAMENTO, CA (March 23, 2009) – As severe flooding threatens the Red River Valley in North Dakota and Minnesota, United Animal Nations (UAN) encourages residents to include their pets in their evacuation plans. Animals left behind during floods can get injured, fall ill, starve, die, and hamper human evacuation and rescue efforts.
Families that may have to evacuate are encouraged to:
- Identify a place where you can evacuate with your pets. Many hotels and motels are pet-friendly, and those that aren’t often make exceptions during natural disasters. A searchable database of pet-friendly accommodations is available at www.petswelcome.com or www.petfriendlyhotelsandtravel.com .
If you are planning to stay with friends or family, confirm beforehand that your pets will be welcome or find a professional kennel safely out of the flood’s reach where you can board them.
- Assemble an animal disaster kit that includes food, water, medications, a leash or cat carrier for each pet, and photos of each animal with family members to prove ownership if they are lost.
- Affix an identification tag to each pet’s collar so he or she can be more easily reunited with you if you are separated.
- Visit www.uan.org/disastertips for more information.
“Animals left to fend for themselves during floods suffer terribly, and evacuees can compound their own stress by worrying about the pets they left behind,” said UAN president Nicole Forsyth. “For both human and animal safety, it is vital that every family include their pets in their evacuation plans.”
Through its volunteer-driven Emergency Animal Rescue Service (EARS), UAN provides free temporary sheltering for communities that become overwhelmed by natural disasters or other crises. EARS volunteers are specially trained to set up and operate temporary animal shelters, where they feed and care for displaced animals until they can be reunited with their families or placed in new homes.
Emergency management and animal control agencies in the
Founded in 1987, United Animal Nations focuses on bringing animals out of crisis and into care through a variety of programs, including emergency animal sheltering and disaster relief services, financial assistance for urgent veterinary care and humane education.
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