• Dogs in Cars, Without the Coffee

    Dogs in Cars, Without the Coffee

    Jerry Seinfeld’s popular Netflix series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, led to a play on words for the title of this blog post about dogs in cars. Of course, dogs and cars go together, just like coffee and cars go together. Both dogs and coffee can make life so much more enjoyable! BTW, the dog you see pictured in the MINI driver’s seat was in a parked car with car owner right outside the car.

    Dogs in cars is a well-known way for dogs to travel, but not all dogs like to ride in cars and there are many precautions to take when a dog travels by car. Here are some basic thoughts if you have a dog that likes to ride along in the car. Even if your dog does not like to travel by car, there are times it becomes necessary to get to the vet’s office or to something fun, like the dog park, so be thoughtful about your dog’s safety and comfort on the way there.

    Also, be extremely mindful of distracted driving and be sure your dog in the car is not a distraction to you while driving. That’s why preparation, common sense, plus a few practical measures can minimize or eliminate any distractions while driving.

    Dogs Should Not Ride in Front Seats
    Many dogs we have known have immediately tried to get in the front seat, sometimes with its head out the window, licking the air. This can pose a number of safety problems and, while we love the sight, it is best to protect your dog by being in the back seat—away from the frontal airbag and use a dog restraint or harness.

    Of course, airbags are a safety feature for passengers restrained by seatbelts. However, if the frontal airbag deploys, the front seat passenger may be injured and even killed if not properly restrained and makes contact with the deploying airbag.

    Dog Harnesses and Containers Can Provide Protection
    Dog harnesses are an excellent safety option, especially for larger dogs. Those available can be comfortable while providing safety and even connecting to the existing safety belt in the vehicle.

    There are some bed-like products with harnesses that can keep a dog safe and contained while in the car. A harness may be helpful for dogs that get queasy with motion, because the straps make them at least feel more secure.

    SUVs
    For cross-over, SUVs or wagons, there can also be a dog guard or gate between the back seat and the storage bay area. This can allow for a dog or multiple dogs to be comfortable in a somewhat open area.

    Reminders About Water and Air Flow
    Don’t forget to make water available, keep a towel available, and a waterproof liner if needed. And keeping the air conditioning available or at least crack the windows to keep airflow for the dog.

    Other Suggestions
    Always give a dog a chance to get familiar with the car, get in, sniff around and adjust to the car. Try for short trips at first, then plan for longer once you believe your dog is safe and comfortable.

    Having some food in the stomach can help ease motion sickness and treats or snacks can always come in handy.

    Talk to your veterinarian about the pros and cons about medication, if needed.

    There is much said about not leaving dogs alone in a car, where they cannot fend for themselves and where the interior temperature can soar and cause immediate harm and death. Cold temperatures can also do harm and should be considered as well as causing harm to a dog left in the car.

    dog in parked MINI
  • 8 Tips to Keep Your Pets Safe and Cool in Summer

    Be Sure To Follow These 8 Tips to Keep Your Pets Safe and Cool in Summer -- Woof, Woof!

    We wait all year for summer, then the long days are here to swim, play and sun. Our pets are part of our lives, so in many cases they are involved in the activities during the warmest months of the year.

    But before you take your fur-covered pal out into the sunshine, make sure you understand how your pet handles the heat, as well as other summertime temptations. People process hot temps different than dogs. We can sweat. Dogs don’t sweat.

    Dogs have a higher body temperature than people at about 100 to 102 degrees Fahrenheit and their bodies just aren't as efficient at cooling down as humans.

    The only sweat glands your furry companion has are on his nose and the pads of his feet. The primary way he brings his body temp down is through panting and breathing.

    8 Tips for Keeping Your Pet Safe on Summer Days

    1. Dogs and cats can quickly dehydrate, so make sure your pet has plenty of fresh, clean water at all times – but especially during hot weather. If your pet will be outside in the heat any length of time, he should have access to complete shade, preferably be on the cool grass, and have an ample supply of drinking water. Play in the sprinkler with your dog or hose down with cool water if outside for any length of time in hot weather.

    2. Exercise your dog in the morning or evening during the coolest temps of the day, stay in the shade whenever possible, and keep all your animals indoors when it's extremely hot, generally considered to be 90 degrees F. or hotter.

    3. Regardless of the time of day, don't overdo exercise sessions. Long periods of exercise in hot weather, even after the sun goes down, can bring on heatstroke – especially in flat-faced dogs that pant less effectively than breeds with longer muzzles.

    4. Never, EVER leave your pet alone in a parked vehicle on a hot day. Your car or truck cab can become a furnace very quickly, even with the windows open, and can cause a fatal case of heatstroke in your beloved pet. Aside from the risk of serious illness or death for your pet, leaving pets unattended in vehicles in hot weather is illegal in many states.

    5. Make sure your dog knows how to swim before giving her access to a pool, pond, lake or other body of water. Not all dogs, even breeds known for their affinity for water, instinctively know how to swim. Introduce your pup to water gradually and use a floatation device if possible, especially when boating. Even excellent swimmers can get injured or worn out from exertion and floatation devices can keep your dog in sight until rescued. If your dog doesn't listen to the 'come' command, always attach a long rope to flotation device so you can 'reel' your dog in if needed.

    6. Don't walk or otherwise subject your dog (or cat) to hot pavement. Not only can this result in burns to tender paws, but because animals are close to the ground – and the ground is much hotter than the air – your animal can quickly overheat. And remember – the paws are a sweat gland.

    7. Keep your pet safe from toxic fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides commonly used during spring and summer months.

    8. Be mindful of fireworks displays. Many animals suffer extreme fear from the noise, and the explosives themselves can be potentially hazardous to a curious pet.

    Know the Signs of Overheating -- Symptoms your pet is overheated include:

    • Excessive panting
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Elevated body temperature (over 104 degrees)
    • Increased heart rate and respiration
    • Drooling
    • Weakness or collapse
    • Seizures
    • Diarrhea and vomiting

    If you have an older pet, one that is overweight or obese, an animal with a heart or lung condition, or a dog or cat with a flat face, the very best thing you can do during hot summer days is keep your pet inside in the air conditioning, with plenty of cool, fresh water to drink.

  • Don’t Let Your Dog’s Paws Get Burned On Hot Asphalt … a Dozen Summer Safety Tips …

    According to ASPCA (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®), we humans love the long and sunny days of summer and enjoy spending time outdoors with our furry companions. However, in our eagerness for this time we have to be sure we do not allow the hot weather to endanger or hurt our pets. Here are some simple precautions provided by ASPCA experts, with a special note to be aware of hot asphalt and to understand how dogs’ paws can easily be burned on this surface.

    Disaster Preparedness for Your Pet

    1. When the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog linger on hot asphalt. Being so close to the ground, your pooch’s body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can burn. Keep walks during these times to a minimum.
    2. Visit the vet for a spring or early-summer checkup. Make sure your pets get tested for heartworm if they aren’t on year-round preventative medication.
    3. Pets can get dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water when it’s hot or humid outdoors. Make sure your pets have a shady place to get out of the sun, be careful not to over-exercise them, and keep them indoors when it’s extremely hot.
    4. Know the symptoms of overheating in pets, which include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. Symptoms can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees.
    5. Animals with flat faces, like Pugs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.
    6. Never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle. Not only can it lead to fatal heat stroke, it is illegal in several states!
    7. Do not leave pets unsupervised around a pool—not all dogs are good swimmers. Introduce your pets to water gradually and make sure they wear flotation devices when on boats. Rinse your dog off after swimming to remove chlorine or salt from his fur, and try to keep your dog from drinking pool water, which contains chlorine and other chemicals.
    8. Open unscreened windows pose a real danger to pets, who often fall out of them. Keep all unscreened windows or doors in your home closed, and make sure adjustable screens are tightly secured.
    9. Feel free to trim longer hair on your dog, but never shave your dog: The layers of dogs’ coats protect them from overheating and sunburn. Brushing cats more often than usual can prevent problems caused by excessive heat. And be sure that any sunscreen or insect repellent product you use on your pets is labeled specifically for use on animals.
    10. Commonly used rodenticides and lawn and garden insecticides can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so keep them out of reach. Keep citronella candles, tiki torch products and insect coils of out pets’ reach as well. Call your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 if you suspect your animal has ingested a poisonous substance.
    11. Remember that food and drink commonly found at barbeques can be poisonous to pets. Keep alcoholic beverages away from pets, as they can cause intoxication, depression and comas. Similarly, remember that the snacks enjoyed by your human friends should not be a treat for your pet; any change of diet, even for one meal, may give your dog or cat severe digestive ailments. Avoid raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate and products with the sweetener xylitol. Please visit our People Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Pets page for more information.
    12. Please leave pets at home when you head out to Fourth of July celebrations, and never use fireworks around pets. Exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns or trauma, and even unused fireworks can contain hazardous materials. Many pets are also fearful of loud noises and can become lost, scared or disoriented, so it’s best to keep your little guys safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area of your home. Be prepared in the event that your pet does escape by downloading the ASPCA Mobile App. You’ll receive a personalized missing pet recovery kit, including step-by-step instructions on how to search for a lost animal in a variety of circumstances.

    Did you know that ASPCA® was the first humane society to be established in North America and is, today, one of the largest in the world?

  • How to Rid Your Home of Pet Odors, Without Getting Rid of Your Beloved Pet

    How harmful can fragrance in the home (or car) be to your pet? What other ways can you freshen up your home when the cause of the odor is your beloved dog or cat?

    There have been many posts popping up on Facebook lately about essential oil diffusers being harmful and possibly toxic to dogs and cats. Some people seem to be using them to cover up pet odors, but they might be actually causing more harm than they people realize.

    While some people are not affected by pet odors and some people do find that it bothers them, pet owners should be careful and aware of what works best and does not cause harm to humans or pets.
    The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals provides assistance and guides to help keep dogs and cats safe in society, safe in homes and outdoors.

    Do you know which cleaning products, human medications and cosmetic items to keep out of your pet’s reach? If you suspect your pet has been exposed to any poisonous substances, contact your veterinarian or call APCC’s hotline at (888) 426-4435 immediately.

    Unfortunately, products that pet owners and homeowners think makes the air in their home (or car) smell better can possibly pollute the air with chemicals that are dangerous to your pets. According to experts, a large percentage of U.S. households use a variety of these products. Studies have found harmful chemicals in air fresheners (all types), scented candles and incense. Most of the effects of these products aren’t immediately obvious and may not even manifest as respiratory issues.

    There are safe, natural alternatives that can freshen the air in your home – these include pet-safe indoor plants, an air purifier and diffusing diluted pet-safe essential oils. The products you should consider not using due to the health-related issues include air freshener sprays, upholstery sprays, plug-ins, gels, candles and incense. Some of the reasons this can be related to the size of pets. Also, both dogs and cats tend to spend a lot of time near the floor where all indoor air pollutants eventually wind up. Then they groom themselves and sometimes each other, ingesting the harmful particles that have accumulated on their fur and in the environment.

    In air fresheners in the form of both aerosol sprays and plug-ins, there are a number of toxic chemicals that can be dangerous to your pet's health as well as yours.

    Here are some ideas on natural alternatives to keep your home smelling fresh. Besides opening up your windows when weather allows, consider adding some pet-safe indoor house plants that can clean the air.

    To make your own deodorizers:
    • Fill a spray bottle with plain vinegar, then add five to 10 drops of essential oils if you like, such as lemon, lavender, or vanilla. Spray the vinegar around the house.
    • Add one-quarter cup of baking soda to a spray bottle and fill it with water. Shake well and spray liberally.

    Other ways to add natural scents to your home are to simmer some mint tea or cinnamon in water or grind up a fresh orange.

    Most of all, enjoy your best friends company--dogs and cats--at home or your car, without overdoing it on the air fresheners. Woof, woof & meow!

  • 4 Recommendations for Favorite Dog & Cat Toys

    When the holidays are upon us and we are fortunate to be able to celebrate with family and friends, of course we naturally want our dogs and cats to be a part of the celebration and they will want to be with us as well. Our pets are valuable members of the family and we enjoy having them with us as we celebrate during the holidays and the spirit of togetherness.

    Take along or have ready a favorite toy if your dog or cat is able to join in the holiday celebrations – better yet, take along a toy for dogs and cats at homes you are visiting, if that’s the case.

    Family Togetherness

    1. For example, our dog Spanky loves his Flippy Flopper and carries it everywhere. It seems to give him additional security to hold it in his mouth or have it nearby.
    2. Our friends’ cat Teddy loves our foam soccer balls for activity, so they are a great gift for a cat.
    3. Big dogs we know love our rope toys and the Flippy Flopper is always a favorite.
    4. Small dogs, like our neighbor’s dog, seem to like the plush toys and sometimes go for the rope toys, too.

    Parties, dinners and gift exchanges can mean extra commotion, noise, food and aromas, rustling paper and new things. When our pets are not used to having more than a few people around, they can get overly excited so a good distraction is a toy.

    Remember to keep your eye on the food, too. When there is more food than usual and it is in easily accessible places, it is best to keep your eye on your pet or make sure temptation is out of the way. Otherwise, pets can end up getting unexpected “floor d’oeuvres.” And “turbo tales” can take out a glass of wine or punch, so that’s another thing to keep your eyes on.

    Whether you are hosting or visiting, you will want to prepare thoughtfully when it comes to your furry friends and family members to keep everyone calm and comfortable, so that everyone has a good time. Some people can be leery if they are not used to pets and being around someone else’s dogs and cats can be a new experience so be sure to check with everyone for familiarity and comfort levels. Pet toys are a good way to keep familiarity and comfort nearby at all times.

    Happy holidays to you and yours and enjoy! Woof, woof & meow.

  • 5 Dog Sitting Choices To Consider If You’re Planning Holiday Travel

    Whatever the occasion, but especially at joyous and stressful times like the holidays in December and New Year’s, there are plenty of good options to consider if you need someone to care for your dog while you are away. The key is to explore the options available to you and your dog and then pick the one that will give you and your best friend a chance to be apart but be comfortable at the same time. Knowing your dog is well taken care of while you’re gone requires some research and planning.

    5 Dog Sitting Choices To Consider If You’re Planning Holiday Travel

    Holidays Can Present Challenges For You And Your Pet

    If you are traveling and traveling with your beloved dog presents more issues than it solves, then consider this short list. The 5 choices include 1) a pet sitter at your home 2) a pet sitter at their home, 3) a local pet hotel nearby, 4) a boarding facility in the country, or 5) a veterinarian’s office that offers boarding as well. Prices can vary anywhere from $15 an hour to $40 a day per dog at a facility. Costs also vary if you have more than one dog or even a cat or two!

    A Pet Sitter at Your Home

    If you already know a pet sitter and are comfortable having that pet sitter stay in your home, that’s the best scenario for your dog. It allows your dog to keep a familiar routine in a familiar place. If you don’t know the pet sitter personally but feel comfortable hiring one from a company, be sure to get recommendations and check out the reviews.

    A Pet Sitter at Their Home

    If you know the pet sitter and are comfortable with him or her, and are comfortable with your dog being at the pet sitter’s home, that’s great. It will take your dog out of usual surroundings and routine, so be sure the pet sitter and surroundings are going to work. You’ll need to check it out together with your dog ahead of time and provide some familiar things for your dog to have during the stay. Find out about other pets that will be present. Again, be sure to ask for references and check out the reviews.

    A Local Pet Hotel Nearby

    A number of pet stores have added what they refer to as a pet “hotel” that is part of the pet store, usually off to the side or back of the store where the pets are able to be on their own without too many distractions. Again, it will be unfamiliar and out of routine, so you should check it out together with your dog ahead of time, get a feel for the demeanor of the staff and surroundings and provide some familiar things for your dog to have during the stay. Also be sure to check out references and reviews.

    A Kennel or Boarding Facility in the Country

    While a kennel or boarding facility can be anywhere, there tend to be facilities in the countryside where dogs can stay in a natural environment and get a chance to run and explore more than in the pet hotels or veterinarian offices that also provide boarding. As with the local pet hotel, it will be unfamiliar and out of routine, so you should check it out together with your dog ahead of time, get a feel for the demeanor of the staff and surroundings and provide some familiar things for your dog to have during the stay. Also be sure to check out references and reviews.

    A Veterinarian’s Office With Overnight Stay

    This is an option if your dog is elderly or has medical issues that need some monitoring from a professional. If it is your veterinarian’s office and they know you and your dog, even better. All the precautions of the first four choices apply here to some extent, so be sure to check it out, ask for references and recommendations, and look at the reviews.

    Definitely ask around, your friends and family will definitely have suggestions. Check out the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters, which also offers a certification program.

    We love our pets and owe it to them and ourselves to never let any harm come to them on our watch.

    Happy Holidays!

  • No Tricks...7 Things to Know About Keeping Your Dog Away From Chocolate

    With costumes, scary faces and, especially, the candy—Halloween is one of the biggest days of the year for children seeking fun and sweets. However, this is not true for pets and especially not true for dogs that might inadvertently eat some candy, worse yet that might eat some chocolate. Chocolate can be deadly to dogs, so be sure to keep your beloved furry friend away from Halloween candy and chocolate at any time of the year.

    Happy Halloween from The Flippy Flopper

    How It Happens

    Inadvertently a dog gets into a bowl of candy or a piece of candy, that’s one thing to prevent. Another is someone actually giving the dog candy when sugar is not good for the dog but chocolate can be deadly.

    No matter how much a dog begs, never give a dog candy. And if a dog should eat some chocolate, there are steps you need to take right away.

    What To Do

    First step is call your veterinarian to ascertain best steps to follow in the situation at hand. If your vet’s office is not open, call an emergency vet. The ASPCA’s 24-hour poison hotline (888-426-4435) is always a great call to make.

    Note: It’s best to have those phone numbers and addresses ready and handy at all times so that you’re not spending time looking when the situation is urgent.

    Second step is usually to get your dog to vomit so that the chocolate is out of the system, but let an expert tell you what to do based on the circumstances.

    Keep a watchful eye over your pet in the meantime for such symptoms of poisoning as:

    • Extreme thirst
    • Diarrhea
    • Too much energy
    • Pacing
    • Panting
    • Shaking
    • Seizures

    How Much Is Too Much

    Any amount of chocolate can be deadly, so any amount is too much.

    The toxic component of chocolate is theobromine. Humans easily metabolize theobromine, but dogs process it much more slowly, allowing it to build up to toxic levels in their system.

    No Amount of Chocolate Is Safe

    Even a little bit of chocolate can make your dog ill.

    Dark chocolates, baking chocolate and dry cocoa powder (for example, hot chocolate mix) are more dangerous than white chocolate or milk chocolate. But 1 ounce of milk chocolate per pound of body weight could still be deadly.

    By the Way

    Theobromine is also found in tea, cola beverages and açaí berries, among other food and beverage products. And it is also dangerous and deadly to cats and other animals, so be aware of any pet getting into candy and chocolate around the house.

    Cocoa Shell Mulch: A Little-Known Danger

    Think twice before you spread cocoa shell mulch on your property. It’s dangerous for pets, too, and dogs are attracted to its sweet smell. Use shredded pine, cedar or hemlock bark instead, ASPCA suggests.

    We love our pets and owe it to them and ourselves to never let any harm come to them on our watch.

    Just because you dog can't celebrate with candy this Halloween, don't forget, you can keep them happy with a number of our products!

     

  • Why Do Dogs Chew, Lick or Scratch Repeatedly and Compulsively?

    A visitor to our facebook page asked us recently about dogs licking his/her paws in the evening. This could be for a number of reasons. A veterinarian once told us about our own dog that it can be a sign of arthritis pain, so definitely something you’d want to look into with your dog. Pet and dog experts also point to other reasons, like allergies, boredom, even obsessive-compulsive disorder. It’s especially a concern when a dog is licking a paw or any area nonstop. In part because it can be awfully distracting to observe, but it also might mean your dog is very uncomfortable or in pain and that’s never an acceptable situation.

    For those of you who have had at least one dog in your life, let alone numerous dogs, you have probably experienced some chewing, licking and scratching behaviors and know they can be quite common in dogs. The harder part is getting to the cause, as there can be a variety of causes. Sometimes you can notice what looks like a raw spot that might be red and irritated. This is usually a result of licking. Some diagnoses can include dermatitis. Again, there can be a number of reasons dogs chew, lick or scratch repeatedly and compulsively.

    Taking dog for walk

    Here are some possible reasons:

    Allergies

    This could mean food allergies or environmental triggers like including mold and pollen.  Dogs can develop contact dermatitis from encountering irritants in pesticides or soap.

    Anxiety & Boredom

    Just as people get bored and chew their nails or cuticles or pull at their hair, dogs can have similar responses to their life situation, especially when the home situation is in an upheaval with the humans in their lives.  Becoming obsessive and compulsive in response to something that is out of their control can result in chewing, licking and scratching behaviors that can cause severe damage.

    Pain

    This is something we never want to think and see in our pets and where we need to do everything we can to identify if a dog is in pain; if so, what is the cause; and what is the treatment? There could be an acute issue, like something stepped on, a bee sting or spider bite, or arthritis or joint problem.

    Skin Issues

    Many common factors like climate and diet can cause skin issues in dogs that then result in discomfort for your dog that causes chewing, licking or scratching repeatedly. Besides a skin issue, the dog could have been affected by fleas, mites or ticks and that must be addressed with a professional to be sure to eradicate the situation as quickly as possible for your dog’s sake and yours.

     We all make a promise to our dogs when we take them in to our lives, so be sure to honor that commitment along with the bond and dedication from your dog by making sure he or she is always well cared for and sees a veterinarian regularly as well as when needed. If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

  • 5 Tips to Help Ensure Your Pets’ Well Being in the Event of a Natural Disaster

    How best to plan for pets in the unfortunate circumstances of evacuating your home due to a natural disaster

    Unfortunately as we’ve seen in the last month or so in the USA and nearby in the Caribbean with such natural disasters as forest fires and hurricanes, there is a need to be prepared for your pets’ safety and wellness as well as your own. The only way to be prepared is to plan ahead. This allows you to minimize risk of injury and death to yourself and your beloved pet(s), as well as keeping first responders and emergency personnel from taking on unnecessary risk to rescue someone who stayed behind because of their pet.

    On Facebook, there were many people posting about how they were going to deal with their pets during hurricanes Harvey in Texas and Irma in Florida – some by hiding in closets to avoid local government-mandated evacuation. This is a last resort and should be avoided by planning ahead as best as possible.

    Disaster Preparedness for Your Pet

    Sheltering Pets With Humans Can Be Problematic But Is Necessary

    It is reported that as one of the lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005, many government programs now include pets in their shelter accommodations.

    This can be difficult due to closeness in shelters and allergies and other medical issues that can be suffered by those humans allergic to pet dander. In Katrina, many residents stayed put—and died in some cases—rather than heed rescuers’ instructions to leave pets behind as waters inundated homes. Others faced wrenching choices when they arrived at shelters that would not allow animals.

    One small white dog, Snowball, became a national symbol of these emotional separations after he was taken from the arms of a child who was boarding a bus to Texas that did not take pets. The boy cried so hard, he vomited.

    Be Prepared – Tip #1

    Prepare a pet emergency kit with information from local government regarding sheltering pets, a list of veterinarian offices and pet emergency care contact information. Have enough crates to hold each pet in the event of a storm in the designated area for each pet. Panic can give rise to out of the ordinary behaviors in pets and fast confinement will be required. These crates can also make or break a situation in a shelter where there are unknown people and situations for your pet.

    Be Prepared – Tip #2

    Make sure your pet(s) wear collars and tags with up-to-date contact information and other identification. Also microchip your pet(s) and be sure to register the microchip with the manufacturer and keep your contact information up to date with the microchip company.

    Be Prepared – Tip #3

    Call your local emergency management office, animal shelter or animal control office to get advice and information. If you are unable to return to your home right away, you may need to board your pet. Find out where pet boarding facilities are located ahead of time and make a list and keep it where you can find it easily. Most boarding kennels, veterinarians and animal shelters will need your pet's medical records to make sure all vaccinations are current, so keep those together and in a waterproof bag.

    Be Prepared – Tip #4

    Post a rescue alert sticker on your front door at home–and keep it up to date, including updating it if you can if and when you evacuate with your pets. This will let first responders and other people know that pets are inside your home. Include the types and number of pets in your home as well as the name and number of your veterinarian.

    Be Prepared – Tip #5

    Be sure to talk to your family, friends, neighbors and pet caretakers, including veterinarians, about taking care of your pets in an emergency situation. Doing this during calm and predictable times is the best way to be prepared in the event you need to act quickly.

    We all love our pets and when we welcome them into our lives we make a promise to them to always do the right thing by them. Please be sure to plan ahead if you have pets so that you can always take care of them as well as yourself in the event of any type of emergency, especially a natural disaster where many people and pets need to be taken care of safely and thoughtfully at the same time.

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