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Plastic Dog Crates and Cat Crates Are Essential in a Pet Emergency Kit

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					Plastic Dog Crates and Cat Crates Are Essential in a Pet Emergency Kit

Emergencies can come in a variety of ways, whether it is by a force of
nature, or a personal event. But however they come, emergencies
ultimately touch every family. Therefore, my family and I have always
felt it prudent and wise to have an emergency plan so that we are better
able to handle the situation whenever it should arise. Since my dogs and
cats have always been important family members, our plan includes them,
along with their own emergency kit. No matter what, our pets are coming
with us. I figure that if it is not safe enough for my family to stay, it
certainly is not going to be safe enough for my pets. In an emergency,
minds will be racing and it will be nearly impossible to think of
everything you might need. So a well developed list of "must have" pet
items is a good idea. I have these items packed inside of a waterproof
plastic tote and labeled as "Pet Emergency Kit". All the family members
know where it is, and I periodically check the kit to make sure it has
not been cannibalized since the last time I looked through it. Below are
the items I keep ready.

1. Sturdy carriers or crates for transport. The first purchase I made was
a plastic dog crate and cat crate for each pet. This is the best way to
ensure your pets will be transported safely and securely, and unable to
escape from the vehicle. When there is a crisis, your pets will sense any
tension or concern from the family and this will cause them to become
nervous or anxious. If pets are not confined to a carrier there is a risk
that in their nervous state, they could run from the car. A plastic pet
crate is the best solution if you are looking for durability and maximum
safety. Plastic crates are also stack-able in the vehicle allowing you to
optimize space. As a note, make sure you secure the crate that is in the
top position. When purchasing your crate you want to make sure it is
large enough to allow the dog or cat to sit or stand and still have about
2-3" of head room. It should also be large enough to allow your pet to
turn around and lie down.

2. Blanket or bedding for each crate. I have placed a blanket in every
crate. If time permits, you can place your pet's favorite blanket inside
of the crate. Your pet needs to be comfortable in the crate in order to
reduce stress. For an emergency kit I have chosen a blanket, since
blankets can also be use for providing warmth.

3. Pet food. I place a week's worth of dry pet food in the kit. Canned
food can be used if that is your pet's preference. I prefer dry pet food
since it is easy to open and store. If you choose to use the can food,
don't forget to pack a manual can opener. I suggest you rotate the food
about once every 8-12 weeks.

4. Water for your pet. I pack a one week supply of water for each pet.
Under normal temperature conditions, I plan about one ounce of water per
one pound of body weight per day. So if you have a 10 lb pet you should
pack 16 oz of water per day. Of course, if it is hot, consumption would
be greater. I also pack an extra gallon of water as a cushion for
consumption.

5. Food and water bowls. Enough for all your pets.
6. Pet Medications. If your pet is taking medication, I suggest packing a
10 day to 2 week supply. If you are in an emergency situation, it may be
difficult to obtain their medication so packing more than a week's worth
is recommended. Remember to rotate the medication, just like the food, so
it does not spoil.

7. Sturdy leashes and extra collars or harnesses.

8. ID Tags. My pets wear ID tags and I strongly recommend them. If you
should become separated from your pet the ID tag will play a critical
role in reuniting the two of you.

9. Litter box and enough litter for a week.

10. Sanitation. I pack a large box of plastic garbage bags. These have
multiple purposes, but one will be to collect all of your pet's waste. I
also pack a large bottle of hand sanitizer, liquid soap and disinfectant.

11. Toys and treats. Being placed in unfamiliar surroundings will cause
your pets to be anxious. Toys and some of their favorite treats will help
to calm their nerves.

12. Basic First Aid Kit. I pack a basic first aid kit for my pets. It
includes a bottle of hydrogen peroxide, anti-bacterial ointment, iodine,
gauze, stick to itself wrap, first aid waterproof adhesive tape and
liquid bandage. Your vet would be able to provide you with a complete
list of first aid items.

13. Pet Photos. If the unthinkable happens, and you become separated from
your pet, the photos could be used for Lost Posters and can help to prove
ownership.

We all hope that we are never faced with a situation that would cause us
to have to evacuate our home. However, I would rather plan for the worse
and hope for the best, than be caught off-guard in a serious situation in
which our treasured pets may suffer. With preparations, all family
members, including your pets will stay happy and healthy.

				
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