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Prepare an Emergency Kit

Your emergency kit should have everything you, your family and your pets would need to be safe and take care of yourselves for at least three days immediately following an emergency. Your kit should be portable in case you need to evacuate.

1. Family Essentials

  • food (non-perishable and easy-to-prepare items, enough for three days) and a manual can opener
  • bottled water (four litres per person for each day)
  • medication(s)
  • flashlight
  • radio (crank or battery-run)
  • extra batteries
  • first-aid kit
  • candles and matches/lighter
  • hand sanitizer or moist towelettes
  • important papers (identification, contact lists, copies of prescriptions, etc.)
  • extra car keys and cash
  • whistle (to attract attention, if needed)
  • sip-lock bag (to keep things dry)
  • garbage bags

2. Extra Supplies for Evacuation

  • clothes, shoes
  • sleeping bags or blankets
  • personal items (soap, toothpaste, shampoo, comb, other toiletries)
  • playing cards, travel games, other activities for children

3. Special Considerations

  • items for babies and small children – diapers, formula, bottles, baby food, comfort items
  • prescription medication
  • medical supplies and equipment
  • any other items specific to your family's needs

4. Pet Essentials

  • Food and water:
    A seven day supply of food and drinking water in an airtight, waterproof container.
  • Current photos of you and your pet:
    If you become separated from your pet during an emergency, a picture of you with your pet will help you document ownership and enable others to help you identify your pet. Include detailed information about species, breed, age, sex, colour and distinguishing characteristics.
  • Important documents:
    Have up-to-date identification including an additional tag with the phone number of someone out of the evacuation area in the event the pet becomes lost.
  • Medications, medical record:
    Keep an extra supply of the medicines your pet takes on a regular basis in a waterproof container.
  • First aid kit:
    A pet first aid kit (like the one suggested by the Saskatchewan Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) is the first step in being prepared should an animal emergency happen. You may also want to talk to your veterinarian about what is most appropriate for your pet's emergency medical needs.
  • Collar/harness, ID Tag and leash:
    Your pet should wear a collar with its rabies tag and identification at all times. Include a back-up leash, collar and ID tag in your pet's emergency supply kit.
  • Crate or other pet carrier:
    If you need to evacuate in an emergency situation, take your pet and animals with you in a carrier with blankets or towels for bedding and warmth. Carriers should be large enough to comfortably house your pet for several hours or even days. Familiar items should be included as they can help reduce stress for your pet.
  • Sanitation:
    Include pet litter, a litter box, paper towels, plastic trash bags and a container of household bleach to provide for pet sanitation.

When you are moving your pets, move them in a pet carrier that enables them to stand up and turn around inside. Train your pets to become comfortable with a carrier by putting food or a favorite toy or blanket in the carrier.

Special travel considerations for birds

  • Birds should be transported in a secure travel crate or carrier.
  • In cold weather, make certain you have a blanket over your pet's cage. This may help to reduce the stress of travelling.
  • In warm weather, carry a spray bottle to periodically moisten your bird's feathers.
  • Have recent photos available and keep your bird's leg bands on for identification.
  • If the carrier does not have a perch, line it with paper towels that you can change frequently.
  • Keep the carrier in as quiet an area as possible.
  • It is imperative that birds eat on a daily basis so purchase a timed feeder. If you need to leave your bird unexpectedly, the feeder will ensure its daily feeding schedule.
  • Items to keep on hand: catch net, heavy towel, blanket or sheet to cover the cage and a cage liner.

Special travel considerations for small animals

  • Small animals such as hamsters, gerbils, mice and guinea pigs should be transported in secure carriers. Be sure to bring bedding materials, food and food bowls.
  • Items to keep on hand: salt lick, an extra water bottle, a small box or tube for the pet to hide in and a week's worth of bedding.

5. Other Tips

  • Pack the contents of your emergency kit in an easy-to-carry bag(s) or a case on wheels.
  • Store your kit in a place that is easy to reach, and ensure that everyone in your family knows where it is.
  • Your water supply is meant to cover what you would drink as well as what you might need for food preparation, hygiene and dishwashing.
  • Check and refresh your kit twice a year including all expiry dates and replace food and water with a fresh supply. Check batteries and replace as needed.
  • Keep your cell phone or mobile device fully charged.

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