The SPCA for Monterey County was the very first animal welfare agency in the United States to partner with the American Red Cross and shelter pets adjacent to human evacuation shelters during disasters. We continue that commitment today with concrete partnerships with our local Red Cross and a seat at the Office of Emergency Services. During the 2008 wildfires we evacuated and sheltered over 500 animals.
Contact us at 831-373-2631 if you have questions or need assistance with emergency pet or livestock evacuations during disasters.
Disaster Preparedness for Pets and Livestock
Pet ownership requires a great deal of knowledge, time, patience and love. Many animal owners may not always consider the need to plan for their pets in the event of a disaster. A little planning and awareness before a disaster occurs can prevent tragedies afterwards.
The Monterey County Office of Emergency Services (OES) recommends that people should be prepared for disasters by taking the necessary steps to care for themselves for a minimum of 72 hours (but preferably at least seven days) after a disaster occurs. This includes planning for no electricity or phone communications, as well as the possibility that services such as police, fire and ambulance will be extremely limited. This recommendation should also extend to all pets and livestock. If you are given an order to evacuate, please take your pets and livestock with you. Any situation that is dangerous for you is also dangerous for your animals.
The following recommendations are based on the SPCA for Monterey County’s experiences assisting animal owners during and after fires, floods, hurricanes, and earthquakes. Pet owners should take a few simple measures to prepare for disasters.
- If you are given an order to evacuate, take your pets and livestock with you. Any situation that is dangerous for you is also dangerous for your animals. The SPCA will always be there for you.
- If you need to leave your pets behind for any reason, contact the SPCA immediately. We provide emergency rescue whenever possible.
- Be prepared for no electricity or phone service for at least 72 hours to one week. Police and emergency services may be severely limited.
- Keep your pet’s vaccinations current and always keep a collar and tags on your pets. Microchip your pets. Many pets are never returned due to lack of identification.
- Create a disaster preparedness kit for your pets and livestock. A complete list is available here.
- Practice disaster training for your animals. Horses should be comfortable loading in to trailers. Dogs should have basic obedience training and be able to listen to you and respond to commands in an emergency. Cats and small animals should be comfortable being placed in, and traveling in, pet carriers.
- Keep a current list of local hotels and motels that will accommodate pets. This information is always available at http://www.spcamc.org/pet-friendly-listings.html. This list will come in handy during extended power outages, as well as disasters situations.
Planning ahead for disasters can save lives and make a very stressful situation less severe. Please call the SPCA at 831-373-2631 if you would like to schedule a disaster preparedness presentation please contact us.
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Disaster Preparedness Checklist
Start preparing yourself and your pets for a disaster with this handy checklist from the SPCA
Learn About SPCA Disaster Rescues
Learn how your SPCA helped rescue animals from recent disasters. Did you know the SPCA for Monterey County was the first SPCA in the nation to partner with the American Red Cross to shelter pets during a disaster?
Pet-Friendly Hotels & Motels
Keep this list of local pet-friendly hotels and motels in your disaster kit for reference during times of need.