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03 September 2005 @ 02:34 pm
Helping the animals  
Animals are also in trouble after the hurricane. Below is the address and phone number of PETA's Animal Emergency Fund if you would like donate, along with their websites checklist of what to do if you have pets and live in a disaster area.

PETA Animal Emergency Fund
501 Front St.
Norfolk, VA 23510

Disaster Preparation Checklist

If at all possible, do not leave animals behind. There is no way of knowing what may happen to your home while you are away, and you may not be able to return for days or even weeks. Animal companions left behind may become malnourished, dehydrated, or crushed by collapsing walls. They may drown or escape in fear and become lost.

All animals should have collars with identification. Make sure that you have a current photo of your animal companion for identification purposes, the same as you would for a child.

Place an emergency window sticker near your front door in case a weather emergency or fire strikes when you are not home. This sticker will alert rescuers to animals in your home who need help. Be sure to note how many animals are in the home and where they can be found.

Have an animal emergency kit readily available. The kit should include a harness and leash or carrier, bottled water, food and water bowls, and dry food. If you have a cat, keep litter and a small litter tray ready to go. Click here to order a PETA Rescue Kit to keep in your car that contains a collapsible carrier, leash, and towel. The kit is helpful if you must grab your animals quickly or if you encounter an animal on the road in need of help. You might also need blankets or sheets to cover carriers and help keep animals calm during transport.

Hotels often lift their "no pets" policies during emergencies, but keep a list of hotels that always accept companion animals, just in case. (Most Motel 6s accept animals.) Include your local animal shelter's number in your list of emergency numbers—it might be able to provide information during a disaster.

If you are unable to return to your home right away, you may need to board your animal companion. Most boarding kennels, veterinarians, and animal shelters require medical records to make sure that rabies vaccinations are current, so keep copies of these records with your emergency kit.

If You Must Leave Your Animal Behind:

Never turn animals loose. Do not tie animals outside or keep them in a vehicle unattended. Leave them in a secure area inside your home.

Leave out at least ten days’ supply of water. Fill every sink, bowl, pan, and Tupperware container with water, then set them on the floor; do not leave just one container—it may spill. If your toilet bowl is free of chemical disinfectants, leave the toilet seat up to provide animals with one more source of water, but do not let that be the only source.

Leave out at least ten days’ supply of dry food. Canned food will go rancid quickly.

If you can’t get to your home, contact a reliable neighbor or friend to check on the animals and get them out, if possible. Provide specific instructions on care.

Helping Wild Animals

Wild animals may also need our help during severe storms. Strong winds and gusts generated by tropical storms and hurricanes often throw young tree squirrels, flying squirrels, and baby birds from their nests. Flooding from significant rainfall may also force small mammals from their subterranean homes.

Following severe weather, be sure to search carefully through debris and nearby creeks and streams for animals who have been displaced from their homes. These animals may need help right away. Before inclement weather arrives, check out the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association Web site and locate the nearest rehabilitator so you'll know whom to contact in the event of an emergency.