Remember, during a disaster, what is good for you is good for your pet. If you leave your pets behind, they may be lost, injured – or worse. Never leave a pet chained outdoors.
Learn what to expect if you take your pet to an evacuation center.
Diseases that can spread between pets and people during a natural disaster
Natural disasters can contribute to the transmission of some diseases. Exposure to inclement weather conditions, stagnant water, wildlife or unfamiliar animals, and overcrowding can put your pet at risk for getting sick. Some of these illnesses can be transmitted between pets and people (also known as zoonotic diseases or zoonoses). Some common disaster-related diseases that pets can pass to people are the following: rabies, leptospirosis, and diseases spread by mosquitoes, fleas, and ticks. Learn more.
How to Keep Yourself and Your Pets Healthy During a Disaster
- Wash your hands after handling your pet, its food, or its waste.
- Do not let your pet lick your face or hands.
- Keep your pet up-to-date on all vaccinations and heartworm, flea, and tick preventatives.
- Practice safe handling of your pet, because your pet may behave differently during a stressful situation.
- Keep your pet in a carrier or on a leash.
- Do not allow your pet to interact with other animals, especially wildlife and stray animals.
- Report any bite wounds to medical personnel immediately.
- Properly clean and disinfect cages and litterboxes.
- Avoid stagnant water, especially after flooding occurring after natural disasters.
- Don’t allow pets to play in or drink contaminated water.