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Pets and hurricane preparedness

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On the average, six Atlantic hurricanes occur each year. Hurricane season in Nova Scotia is from June 1 until November 30.
The Disaster Animal Response Team of Nova Scotia offers the following information for pet owners during hurricane season. Visit www.dartns.org for more information.

• Do not leave your pets behind if you need to be evacuated.
• Subscribe to alerts in your area to keep updated on events as they occur.
• Securely fasten a current identification tag to your pet’s collar. It is a good idea to include a phone number of a friend or family member so someone who finds your pet will be able to reach someone who knows you.
• Microchipping your pet is the safest way to ensure your pet is returned to you safe if lost or stolen.
• Carry a photo of you and your pet for identification purposes.
• Transport pets in secure pet carriers. Keep pets on leashes or harnesses.
• If you and your pets cannot stay together, call friends, family members, veterinarians or boarding kennels in a safe area to arrange foster care.
• Prepare an emergency kit for your pet, filled with at least a three-day supply of food, water medical records, owner’s documentation, cat litter, garbage bags, can opener, toys, blankets, hand sanitizers and medication.
• Keep a list of emergency phone numbers (veterinarian, local animal control, animal shelters, Red Cross, etc.).
• Bring pets inside before the storm starts and keep them calm and reassured.
• After the storm, always keep your pet on a leash until you assess the situation. Familiar landmarks and scents may have been washed away. Check for fallen debris that may have blown into your yard or downed power lines.
The Disaster Animal Response Team of Nova Scotia is a charitable organization, working in partnership with the Canadian Red Cross to set up and run emergency shelters, for animals affected by man-made and natural disasters. With the Red Cross being one of the leading organizations when it comes to providing humanitarian support in times of disaster, it seems like a natural fit that we now work together. People love their pets and would not want to leave them behind. Now, you can evacuate with your pet, and you both have a safe place to go.
Working with a great group of volunteers, we provide information to the public on emergency preparedness by attending community events, giving educational presentations and promoting items like our ‘Life Meter for Pets” that helps raise awareness about leaving your pets in vehicles in hot weather.
Catherine

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