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How to Create a COVID-19 Pet Preparedness Plan

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It’s a good idea to have a pet disaster plan in general, but with the COVID-19, you’ll want to take a few extra precautions. Here’s how to create a pet emergency preparedness plan, what you should always have on hand, and what to do in the instance that you or a family member gets sick.

 

Preparing your pet for an emergency:

  • Check to make sure your pet’s vaccinations are up-to-date and track down their health records
  • Make sure your pet wears at least two forms of identification—i.e., a microchip and a tag on his or her collar with your contact information
  • Double check that your contact information for your pet is correct and up-to-date
  • Take a recent picture of your pet, to have on hand in case your pet unexpectedly gets lost

 

What to have on hand:

Pack a kit that you can get to easily if needed and is easy to pass along to a friend or family member who may need to care for your pet in the event you get sick during COVID-19. Include the following:

  • A two weeks supply of food, water, litter and treats
  • Any medications your pet is taking, plus instructions on how to administer
  • Vaccine records and your pet’s medical history
  • Contact information for your pet’s veterinarian and any emergency contacts
  • Proof of ownership—i.e., copies of your pet’s registration, adoption papers or microchip certificate
  • Recent photos of your pet, to distribute in the instance your pet gets lost
  • Comfy bedding or pet blankets
  • Brushes and grooming supplies
  • A few favorite toys
  • A crate or carrier to transport your pet
  • An extra collar or harness and leash
  • A pet first aid kid

 

Caring for your pet during the coronavirus pandemic:

 

Veterinary visits:

  • Avoid unnecessary veterinary visits and reschedule standard appointments
  • If your pet needs medical care, reach out to your veterinarian to discuss your options
  • Many veterinary offices are offering curbside service to help minimize contact
  • Make sure you know your vet’s protocols when it comes to emergency care

 

Exercise and play:

 

General care and feeding:

Most of all, try to continue to love and care for your pet as usual. If you are struggling due to job loss or other issues, there may be pet financial assistance available. You can also reach out to your local shelter or pet welfare organization. Many have food banks or pantries to assist pets and people in need during this time.

What to do if you or someone in your family gets sick

Check the CDC’s current guidelines. Make sure to designate someone in advance to care for your pet in the instance that you get sick, and discuss your care plan ahead of time. Prepare the items your pet needs and make it easy for your designated caregiver to pick things up.

 

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