Don’t forget to make preparations for your pets. In the event that your area is evacuated, never leave companion animals behind to fend for themselves. They aren’t any better equipped to survive disasters than humans are. Whether you stay in your home or evacuate, plan on enough food for your pet and take into consideration their need for water, bowls and any medications that will last a week.
Always keep your pet carriers in an easy to find place and use them. A storm is no time to lose your pet outside so use the carriers, even if your pet is usually calm traveling without one. Put I.D. tags on all your animals just in case they get separated from you. Also, if you must evacuate, your pets won’t be allowed at public shelters. Do not plan to leave animals unsupervised in a car, since they can suffer from heatstroke. Some but not all motels in Escambia, Santa Rosa and surrounding counties allow pets in at least some of their rooms including Motel 6 and La Quinta Inn. Call ahead to make sure and always know your destination in advance. For a list of pet friendly hotels nationwide, visit petswelcome.com
If you absolutely must leave your companion animals behind, leave them inside the house, with access to upper floors. Leave out at least 10 days supply of dry food and water. Fill multiple sinks, bowls, pans, and plastic containers with water. Do not turn animals loose outside to fend for themselves or, worse, tie them up or leave them outside in cages, where they will be unable to flee rising flood waters.