Cats and hurricanes

PHOTO PROVIDED

PHOTO PROVIDED

In a blog post featuring cats and hurricanes, a hurricane wind scale looks at its effects on felines — humorously. Scratching Post Cat Hospital in North Port, however, notes it is important to take care of pets during hurricanes and know how to evacuate with them.

By ALEXANDRA HERRERA

Staff Writer

NORTH PORT — Residents should prepare their pets for hurricanes just as they prepare themselves.

The ASPCA recommends pet owners get an alert sticker and place it on their windows or front doors. The alert sticker will let rescuers know that pets are in the home.

Pet owners should not leave pets behind or abandon pets and should plan to take their pets if they evacuate during a storm.

According to the ASPCA, if it’s not safe for you, it’s not safe for your pets.

The Humane Society of the United States recommends that pet owners should not wait for evacuation orders, but evacuate with their pets early. If you cannot bring your pets, check with local veterinarian offices or shelters to see if they can provide temporary shelter.

Tim Norell, at the Gulf Coast Scratching Post, advises owners to have larger kennels for their pets to move around in while in the shelters, and to have space for litter boxes.

Animals should also be up to date with all their vaccines and rabies shots, owners should have documentation for their pets as well.

On the pet hospital’s blog post, there is also information on how to register for Sarasota County Evacuation Centers, which are all pet friendly. Pet owners should also identify, which hotels accept animals during an evacuation.

In a graphic from Pug Rescue of Florida on Facebook residents should prepare a hurricane kit for their pets, and have a plan in place.

Atlantic hurricane season ends Nov. 30.

Pet owners should prepare five to seven days worth of non-perishable food for pets, a pet first aid kit, seven plus days of water, comfort toys and blankets.

Pets should be microchipped and have on identification tags, and owners should have photos of their pets with information — photos can either be on their phones or physical photos.

Have extra carriers, leashes, potty pads, litter and disposable litter boxes, experts said.

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