Early wildfire season expected—don't wait for an emergency, get prepared!
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Early wildfire season expected—don’t wait for an emergency, get prepared!

March 18, 2024

Good planning can make all the difference in the event of a disaster. Don’t forget to include your pets in the plan! To make your emergency exit as efficient as possible, we have included preparation tips and a downloadable evacuation checklist below.

Prepare & Prep

  • Emergency Sticker: Put a sticker on each entry of your home for first responders to help identify what animals are in the home.
  • Pack a ‘to go’ bag: Having a ‘to go’ bag ready is essential. It should include everything from your pet’s photographs to their microchip information, medications and medical records.
  • Pet insurance: Make sure everything is up to date on your pet’s health insurance including account and contact information and keep this info in your ‘to go’ bag. If you don’t have pet insurance yet, consider signing up with Petsecure Pet Insurance.
  • Collar, tag and permanent ID: Keep a collar and tag on your pet with your home phone number and address. As pets can slip out of their collars, make an appointment with your vet to get your pet a permanent ID such as a microchip or tattoo.
  • Register your pet: In the event you’re separated from your pet during an emergency evacuation, make sure your pet and their identification are registered with the BC Pet Registry (microchip, tattoo or licence). This step is crucial for a quick and safe return.When your pet is found, their microchip can be scanned or tattoo code read. The ID is then searched on bcpetregistry.ca and the owner is contacted using the phone number or email found on the pet’s profile. Remember to keep your contact details updated

Important Emergency Checklist

  • Food, water and treats for two to four weeks:
    • Include dishes – collapsible are great,
    • Manual can opener, spoon/scoop.
  • Dogs: 70 ml for each kilogram for average dog
  • Cats: 1 litre/day for average cat
  • Pet first aid kit: Include exam gloves, small flashlight, blunt tip scissors, gauze pads & rolls, rubbing alcohol, antibiotic ointment, sterile rinse solution, cold pack, bandage materials, thermometer and lubricating jelly, emergency thermal blanket. Have the ability and knowledge to provide emergency help for your pet.
  • Medications and medical records: Include medications for two to four weeks, vet contact info, pet photos with written descriptions of your pets and store them in a Ziploc bag.
    • Copy of your pet’s current vaccination history.
    • Any special medications and instructions.
  • Dogs: Waste bags, disinfectant for pet mess clean-up, paper towels, leashes (6 foot and 15-20 foot), harness, muzzles.
  • Cats: Litter box, litter, scoop, garbage bags, consider having a cat harness and leash.
  • Small animals: Bedding, extra water bottle, hiding box, extra hay.
  • Sturdy carriers: One for each pet and extra bedding. If you can bring it, also consider a larger expandable ‘tent’ carrier for cats or an exercise pen for dogs can make them a bit more comfortable if you’re going to be out of your home for an extended period of time. Having spaces for your cat or dog to hide in will provide some much-needed comfort. While humans understand what’s going on and know it’s temporary, a pet going into a big gym or a shelter is scary for pets. Having somewhere they can play or hide gives them a chance to feel safe wherever they are.
  • Shade: Without a carrier, having something to provide shade if outdoors.
  • Toys to help entertain and lower stress (dogs: Kong, ball, treat ball; cats: feather wand, catnip toys)
  • Comfort: Bring some of the things that will allow them to feel comfortable. This could be a toy or a brush from home, or their favourite treats help to keep them safe and happy.
  • Extras: Towels/blankets, paper towels, rope, duct tape, Sharpie marker, snap ties.
  • Label all containers with pet names and your contact information – things can go missing in an emergency. As many items as possible should be packed in ready-to-go bins or backpacks. Mark storage bins with pet names and your contact information in case items are separated at an evacuation centre. While in storage, rotate pet food and water every three months; replace medications as advised by your veterinarian.
  • If you have animals who cannot be moved in an immediate evacuation, such as aquarium fish or farm animals, create a sign describing the animals left on the property with your name and contact information. Prepare this now and keep tape with it so it is ready to affix to your door to alert rescue officials.
  • List of BC SPCA Centres in your area: Include list of BC SPCA centres nearest you and in surrounding areas. Write down BC SPCA’s Animal Helpline 1-855-622-7722 in case you need assistance such as emergency boarding.

Download Evac Checklist

Want to provide supplies? Contact each shelter directly if you have pet supplies to drop off or donate below: