Pets and Disasters

Large Animals in Disaster
Do you live on a farm or in the country? Do you have horses, cattle, sheep, goats, pigs or other large animals that need transported in the event of a disaster? Make sure you talk with Dad and Mom and have a plan in place for your large animals.

Listed are a couple of ideas that you may want to think about prior to a disaster.

  • Evacuate animals wherever possible. Map out primary and secondary routes in advance.
  • Evacuation destinations should be prepared with, or ready to obtain, food, water, veterinary care, and handling equipment.

  • Vehicles and trailers needed for transporting and supporting each type of animal should be available along with experienced handlers and drivers. It is best to allow animals a chance to become accustomed to vehicular travel so they are less frightened and easier to move.
  • In case evacuation is not possible, animal owners must decide whether to move large animals to shelter or turn them outside. This decision should be based on the disaster type, quality and location of shelter, and the risks of turning them outside.
  • ALL animals should have some form of identification.

Wildlife in Disaster
What if you encounter wildlife during a disaster? What should you do? To protect yourself and your household, learn how to deal with wildlife (Always talk to Dad and Mom before encountering a wild animal). Listed below are a couple suggestions on what you can do if you should happen upon wildlife in the event of a disaster.

  • Be cautious approaching wild animals during emergency situations. Do NOT corner them. You may think that they are cute and you may feel as if you should try to save them but wild animals will likely feel threatened and may endanger themselves by dashing off into floodwaters, fire, etc. or the wild animal could possibly injure you.

  • Wild animals such as snakes, opossums, and raccoon often seek refuge from flood waters on upper levels of homes and have been known to remain after water recedes. If you encounter animals in this situation – open a window or other escape route and the animal will likely leave on its own. Do NOT attempt to capture or handle the animal. Make sure Dad and Mom are aware of this wild animal. Should the animal stay, call your local animal control office or animal shelter.
  • If you see an injured or stranded animal, do NOT approach or attempt to help. Call your local animal control officer or animal shelter.
  • Animal carcasses can present serious health risks. Contact your local health department for specific help and instructions.

For more information on animals in disaster contact the Ogle County Emergency Management Agency Office at 815-732-6666 ext. 289.