Preparation is essential
Having a well rehearsed emergency plan can mean the difference between life and death. It’s critical to be ready for the unexpected so you and your pets remain safe in an emergency.
We experience heat and weather extremes in Victoria every year. We always hope for the best, but need to be ready should the worst happen.
Be prepared for evacuation
Update your pet’s microchip
It’s essential that your pet’s microchip details are current. If you’re separated, this information is crucial to reunite you as soon as possible.
Identification ready and readable
Identification tags are readable by everyone, so keep this information clear and accurate. It’s difficult to predict how your pet may react to an emergency situation, so always have ways of getting them back if they bolt.
Many boarding facilities will require proof of vaccination before accepting your pet for temporary accommodation, so keep those jabs up to date.
Organise temporary accommodation
Determine where your pet can stay if temporary accommodation is needed. This could be a friend’s house, pet boarding facility or animal shelter.
Tip: It can be tricky to move horses at the last minute, so consider moving them to a safer area in high risk seasons.
Relocate your pet early
When there is a high risk of an emergency or disaster situation, consider moving your pet before it worsens. Knowing your pet is safe while you deal with everything else will tick one thing off your to-do list.
Tip: Cats are especially vulnerable to hiding when they’re afraid, so it’s best to keep them contained or relocate them early.
Determine an emergency guardian
Identify a trusted person close by who can action your evacuation plan if you are not home.
Decide how you will transport your pets and purchase any crates or restraints in advance. Keep dogs and small animals with you, and restrain them at all times.
Plan your evacuation route
Consider various access routes to exit dangerous areas and know the alternatives if your preferred route is blocked.
Assembling a pet emergency kit
Ensure you have a pet emergency kit packed and ready to go. If you have been advised by emergency services to stay at home, keep your pets with you and ensure your pet emergency kit is on hand.
Prepare livestock and horses
Evacuate livestock and horses early using suitable transport. Take all the items needed for your animals’ stay including temporary fencing.
If you can’t evacuate your horses or livestock, prepare a large area with minimal vegetation and access to food and water in fire resistant containers.
For more information on assisting wildlife during an emergency, please contact Wildlife Victoria or the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).