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Cats: Disaster Preparedness Shopping List

Emergency Animal Rescue Service (EARS)

Are you prepared to take care of your cat when a disaster strikes? If not, NOW is the time to stock up on the items that you will need so you will not be unprepared. Listed below is a handy shopping list for you to use. The next time you buy food or supplies for your cat, take this list with you. Don’t put off doing what you should do now – it may just make the difference between being able to keep your cat alive when a disaster strikes.

Cats: Disaster Preparedness Shopping List


Here are the supplies that you should have in a disaster kit for cats. Adjust the amounts, depending on the number of cats that you have.


Have at least a (2) week supply at all times. Use the brand that your cat is used to eating. Buy pop top cans of food small enough to be used at one feeding since you may not have a way to properly refrigerate a partially used can of food – do not feed food that has been left out. Store dry food in an airtight, water proof container. Rotate food at least once every (3) months. Include in your supplies a feeding dish, a spoon to scoop and mix the food, and a hand crank can opener in case you do not have pop top cans.


Have at least a (2) week supply at all times. Store water in plastic containers and keep in a cool, dark place. Rotate water at least once every (2) months.


Have a small litter box and litter scoop in your supplies. Have a supply of cat litter to last at least (2) weeks. Have some plastic bags in your supplies for disposing of your cat’s waste.


Have a small container of dish soap for cleaning purposes. Have paper towels for drying dishes and for other cleanup.

5. COLLAR AND TAG Have a proper fitting break away collar and tag on your cat at all times, and keep an extra collar in your supplies in case the permanent one gets lost. Have a spare temporary tag in your supplies that you can write on – if you are going to be living somewhere else temporarily, you should put that address and phone number on the tag. You may want to consider microchipping or tattooing your cat as a more permanent form of identification.


You should have a proper fitting harness and leash in your supplies so that if you have to keep your cat confined in a cage for an extended period of time, you have a secure way to take the cat out of the cage to get some exercise.


You should have a wire collapsible cage to transport your cat in should you have to evacuate and/or to keep it in following the disaster (remember that exterior walls can fall down and windows may be broken, so you need a secure way to keep your cat safely confined). Be sure the cage is large enough to give the cat room to spread out, and extra space for a food and water dish, plus a litter box. If your cat plays with toys, include in your supplies some toys to keep your cat entertained.


You should have in your supplies a basic first aid kit, along with a first aid book for cats – here are some basic items to include in that kit:

  • conforming bandage (3″x5″)
  • absorbent gauze pads (4″x4″)
  • absorbent gauze pad (3″x 1 yard)
  • Q-tips (1 box)
  • antiseptic wipes
  • emollient cream
  • tweezers and scissors
  • instant cold pack
  • latex disposable gloves (several pairs)


If your cat is on long term medication, always have on hand at least a (2) week supply, since your vet may not be able to open right away to fill a prescription. Check with your veterinarian to see if he/she has a disaster plan – if not find a veterinarian in your area who does have a plan so that you can get medical care for your cat should it get injured during the disaster. Keep your cat’s medical records, including records of vaccinations with your disaster supplies.


You should have in your supplies some current pictures of your cat to use in case your cat gets lost during the disaster – be sure to include yourself in some of the pictures in case you have to show proof of ownership.

Courtesy of United Animal Nation’s Emergency Animal Rescue Service
For more information please contact EARS at (800) 440-EARS
OR visit

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