What to expect in an emergency situation
During an emergency incident, the emergency services such as Police and Fire Service may require an evacuation of your home. In the event of this, you will need to consider the well-being and the requirements of your pet(s).
Planning for your pet before an emergency
By preparing now you will save valuable time in an emergency situation. Do not wait until it is too late!
What you can do now
- Ensure that your pet is identifiable (a microchip is recommended)
- Make sure you have sufficient food and medication where required for the needs of your pet
- Discuss with friends or family to see if they would be able to accommodate your pet in an emergency situation
- Store documents like vaccination records, your vet’s details and pet’s microchip details in a sealed bag
Being evacuated from your home
If you are evacuated from your home, you may want to consider staying with friends or relatives. If this is not possible an emergency rest centre may be open nearby.
A rest centre is a venue such as a leisure or community building usually run by the Council. It can provide short term shelter, warmth, food and refreshment. Rest centres will have a limited capacity to house pets, due to the lack of on-site facilities, but every effort will be made to accommodate evacuees and their pets.
If you have to leave your pets at home
In an emergency it may not be possible or advisable for owners to take some pets with them. Some animals may be left at home for a period of time, where the environment or their accommodation is suitable and considered safe.
Providing a safe environment may vary from free access in your home to a cage or a tank, depending on the needs of the pet. You will need to leave sufficient food and water to cater for the needs of the animal. Under no circumstances should pets be tied up or have unnecessary restricted movement when left at home, as this may place them in a stressful situation or danger.
If you do leave your pet in situ it is advisable to leave a note in the window to inform Emergency Responders.
Keeping yourself safe
Animals rely on your protection for their well-being. In an emergency situation, they need you to ensure their safety. However, never put your own or another human life in danger to save an animal.