Emergency Preparedness For Your Pets

September is Designated as Emergency Preparedness Month

September is  National Emergency Preparedness Month. How very fitting as residents of the Carolinas and much of the East Coast are bracing for Hurricane Florence to hit later this week. Here at Coddle Creek we take this issue seriously.  We lived through Hurricane Hugo twenty-nine years ago and learned a great deal. 

emergency preparedness

Take Me With You!

Hurricane Hugo Compared to Hurricane Florence

In Hugo, we learned there could be power outages as far west as Boone and Asheville.  We learned that rooftops could be lifted and homes destroyed.  Billy was stationed at Shaw Air Force Base in Sumter, SC.  He and other military personnel were “deployed” for weeks afterward in various parts of North and South Carolina to help with clean up.  

I lived in Asheville, NC.  My sister was a student at Appalachian State University in Boone.  Our brother lived in Clover, SC. We each experienced heavy rain and high winds with some damage in the areas of our homes.  Our parents lived on the family homeplace in Lincoln County.  Approximately 10 acres of their property was covered in hardwoods.  Remarkably, my father had enough downed trees to cut all the firewood they needed to heat their home for the next eleven years.  After their deaths, there was still enough firewood stacked in the chicken house to have heated their home for several years.

The National Weather Service website contains personal stories from numerous people, including the then young meteorologist Eric Thomas at WBTV.  A story in the Charlotte Observer on the 25th anniversary of Hugo tells similar stories.

Similarities Between Hugo and Florence

Florence has enough in common with Hugo to have us on alert and well prepared.  We expect you are prepared if you lived through Hugo, grew up hearing the stories or have lived around here long enough to meet some of us “old-timers.”  You most likely know what you need to keep yourself safe and comfortable. Therefore, we are focusing on the extra information you need to keep your cats, dogs, small caged pets and birds safe.  

Emergency Preparedness for Pets

A lot of emergency preparedness for pets is similar to emergency preparedness for humans.  We know the drill.  Have enough water and food. You need medication. Have supplies handy and ready to deploy.  But there are several special considerations for our pets.

Several major networks offer great tips.  Here is an article from CNN. And Fox News offers great tips too.

Special Food and Water Considerations for Pets

  • If you feed raw food you will need extra ice and coolers in case of power outages
  • For pets on a prescription veterinary diet you will need to have an extra bag of prescription kibble or box of canned prescription food
  • If you make home prepared meals for your pets you will need extra ice to keep the food safe if you lose electricty
  • For pets who eat regular kibble or canned food you need an adequate supply in case you can’t get to the store
  • Pets that drink distilled water or filtered water need extra jugs of water

Medication for Your Pets

  • If your pet is on  medication for thyroid issues, Cushings, diabetes, anxiety, etc you will need  enough for two weeks
  • But even if your pet is not usually anxious he may feel nervous with the noises of a major storm, changes in barometric pressure, etc
  • If you have to evacuate from your home your pet may get sick in your vehicle
  • If you have to move to the home of a relative or to a shelter, your pet may be nervous
  • In each of these instances it’s a good plan to talk with your vet today about what over the counter supplements may be helpful if it’s too late to have your pet evaluated for prescription medication  

Special Supplies for Your Pets

  • Nature’s Miracle makes a cat calming spray that can be sprayed on blankets and beds
  • Feliway makes diffusers and a calming solution for the cat scratching post
  • Sentry makes calming collars for cats
  • Adaptil makes calming collars, sprays and diffusers for dogs
  • There are numerous storefront retailers and on line retailers that sell a wide variety of calming treats, collars and sprays for multiple species of pets
  • It’s helpful to use one of the calming sprays on your pets’ blankets or to put a calming collar on them
  • It’s also helpful to give your pet a calming treat if they don’t have medication to treat anxiety

Pet Friendly Emergency Shelters and Hotels

  • Bring Fido provides information on pet friendly hotels
  • Here is a list of pet friendly emergency shelters
  • Many breed specific rescue organizations have active social media pages
  • Log into those social media pages to see if someone is offering a place to stay for others affected by the storm
  • Because most public emergency shelters will have separate areas for humans and pets you will need dog crates, cat carriers and bird cages for your pets
  • To block the scary view of others it’s helpful to place a blanket or towel over the dog crate or cat carrier.
  • Each dog will need a crate, bed, towels, food/water bowls, ID tags, collar, leash, harness, poop bags and toys
  • Each cat will need a carrier, bed, blankets, food/water bowls, toys, ID tags, collar, litter, litter box, litter scoop and bags to use for used litter
  • Consider a harness and leash for your cat
  • Each bird needs his or her cage, food and water containers, toys and blankets to cover the cage

What to Do Before the Next Pet Emergency

Chances are you were not fully prepared this time.  That’s ok.  Very few people are always fully prepared.  Good preparation takes planning, time and money. You can’t be blamed for not knowing what you don’t know.  Now you know so you will do better next time.

Next week do these steps:

Review the things we talked about and select the ones you have the time and budget to implement first. That might mean buying a dog crate.  Or maybe it’s getting one extra bag of pet food so you can stay ahead.  Likewise maybe you can schedule a vet appointment for your anxious pet to get medication. 

Train your cat to go in his carrier or your dog to love her crate. The public library has lots of books to help with this.  If your budget will stretch a little further schedule a few private sessions with a positive reinforcement trainer or take advantage of free classes offered

If you want to go a step further consider taking a pet cpr and first aid class in case your pet sustains an injury.  That’s helpful in every day life.  We teach Pet Tech classes and are happy to have you join us if your live nearby. 

Another great plan is to microchip your pets. 

And last but not least.  Never give up. This too shall pass.

How to Protect Your Picture Frames and Glass Items from Your Cat

Cats Gone Wild

The term “cats gone wild” conjures up all sorts of images. Maybe you picture a cat attacking a person or dog. Maybe you picture a cat knocking all the soap and shampoo bottles into the bath tub.  Maybe you picture a cat knocking other cats down the steps. Maybe you picture a cat resisting your efforts to give it a pill.

cats gone wild

Uncle Billy cuddling innocent Angelo

Our story of cats gone wild is much more mundane. Several weeks ago I was on a pet sitting visit with Angelo, one of the cats we take care of on a regular basis. Angelo had gone upstairs and I was downstairs writing my note for his humans. Suddenly I heard a crashing sound. Fearing the worst, I went upstairs and discovered he had knocked over a picture frame on the edge of a table.  I moved all the photos to the other end of the table and hoped for the best.

That incident reminded me of another time when Toby, another one of our cat clients was chasing his sisters through the house. He leaped on the kitchen island and knocked over a beautiful glass figurine.  It shattered into what seemed like a million pieces.  I picked them all up (with broom and then damp paper towels) and carefully inspected all the cats to make sure no one got cut.

Museum Wax

cats gone wild

Museum Wax

Both these incidents made me think about solutions to prevent cats from knocking things over, particularly things that break.  After a little research I found an article in cathealth.com. The solution..tada….museum putty or museum wax! Brilliant!!

You can buy museum wax or museum putty at stores like Home Depot, Lowes,  Ace Hardware and crafts stores. There are numerous brand names.  In addition to holding ceramic and other breakable items in place you can use it to secure a picture frame to the wall.

Museum wax will not only keep your breakables safe from your cats, it will keep them safe from your small children and clumsy adults.  It’s a win-win-win situation.

Special Event to Benefit State of the Art Pet Education and Adoption Center

 Special Event to Benefit State of the Art Pet Education and Adoption Center

State of the Art Pet Education and Adoption Center

Artist Rendering of Pet Education and Adoption Center

Get ready for it…wait for it…go for it! The East Lake Norman Women’s Networking Group is sponsoring a delightful evening,  For the Love of the Animals FUNdraising Event on April 14. The event venue is The Pearl Weddings and Events in Cornelius and this delightful event begins at 6:30 p.m.

The evening includes appetizers, dinner, music, demonstrations by local animal artists, a raffle and silent auction of some fantastic gifts.The most special activity will be puppy smooches!! A cash bar will be available.

Just a few of the raffle items include a Zoom Take Home Teeth Whitening Kit dontated by Welborne and White Dentistry, a five days Day Care Pass from Lucky Dog Bark & Brew, lunch for two from Novanta 90 Pizzeria Napolenta, and from us a cat scratcher basket full of kittie toys, food, dishes, catnip, Greenies, nail clippers, treats and a book on cat care perfect for a new cat guardian or long time cat lover.

About Friends of the Animals

Proceeds from this first annual event will go toward helping Friends of the Animals build their state of the art Pet Education and Adoption Center. Friends of the Animals’ mission is  to promote responsible pet ownership, provide low-cost spay neuter services, and promote adoption of homeless pets.

State of the Art Pet Education and Adoption CenterOnce built, the Friends of the Animals facility will take educational programs to local schools to help young people develop kindness, respect and compassion for animals.  In-school programs and summer camps at the center will empower young people by learning about responsible pet ownership and the importance of spay/ neuter. Education will be a primary focus for helping change the current situation of too many homeless pets in our region.

How to Get Tickets

Better hurry to purchase tickets. You can purchase on line via the link or by mail at Friends of the Animals, PO Box 3937, Mooresville 28117. The deadline is March 31. A little birdy told me maybe if you smile sweetly they will extend that deadline a few days, but hurry to be sure!!

December Happenings around Lake Norman

These December Happenings Around Lake Norman are Making it Look a Lot Like Christmas

December Happenings Around Lake Norman

We are never without fun things to do around Lake Norman in December or any other time.  There’s something for the entire family, just for the kids and just for the pets. Enjoy!!

We hope you enjoy all the December Happenings Around Lake Norman!

Christmas Happenings Around Lake Norman

10 Plans for Black Friday: Anything but Shopping

Not this.  We have 10 Plans for Black Friday: Anything but Shopping!

Black Friday shopping fight

Black Friday shopping fight

 

 

We have some great alternatives instead.

  1. Hiking with the dogs at Stone Mtn, NC State Park.
  2. Transporting a rescue dog from the shelter to his or her foster home.
  3. Playing fetch with Luke.
  4. Teaching Trooper how to lay down on command.
    Trail walk at home

    Trail walk at home

  5. Trimming Luke’s nails.
  6. Putting up the red flags to begin Trooper’s electronic fence training.
  7. Working with Daisy Mae on the “give it” command.
  8. Playing “find it” individually with Trooper & Daisy Mae. (Luke is a lost cause because he is so well mannered. LOL)
  9. Hiking at Lake Norman (LKN) State Park.
  10. Loving on all three dogs.

I have not gone shopping on Black Friday in many years.  Billy thinks he has never gone shopping on Black Friday.  These are some ideas to get you started.  We know we will be far from any malls.