Your family may not be together when a disaster strikes so it is important to plan in advance: how you will get to a safe place; how you will contact one another; how you will get back together; and what you will do in different situations. Read more about Family Communication during an emergency. has made it simple for you to make a family emergency plan. Download the Family Communication Plan for Parents and Kids (PDF - 1.2 Mb) and fill out the sections before printing it or emailing it to your family and friends.

You should also inquire about emergency plans at places where your family spends time: work, daycare and school, faith organizations, sports events and commuting. If no plans exist, consider volunteering to help create one. Talk to community leaders, your colleagues, neighbors and members of faith or civic organizations about how you can work together in the event of an emergency. You will be better prepared to safely reunite your family and loved ones during an emergency if you think ahead and communicate with others in advance. Read more about school and workplace plans.

Preparing your pet before, during and after an emergency is very similar to preparing ourselves. One of the most important steps of pet emergency preparedness is to have a plan. Taking into account the type of animal you have, the risks your household are vulnerable to and your pet’s needs is a great starting place to building your pet emergency preparedness plan.

Tips to get your pet emergency ready:

  • Make sure your pet has tags with contact information
  • Keep a current photo of your pet and animal records
  • Be familiar with local shelters. This may come in handy in case your pet goes missing.
  • Make sure you have an emergency kit for your pet. Items in the kit should include pet food, water, medications, veterinary records, blankets, etc.
  • Have an animal carrier and leash

Emergencies can be just as scary for animals as they are for humans. If you find yourself and your pets in the middle of an emergency, bring them inside to a safe area immediately. If you are ordered to evacuate, do not leave your pets behind. Evacuate with your animals as safely as you can, without putting yourself in danger. This stresses the importance of pet planning – so that you know you can avoid being in a difficult situation should you be in an emergency. For those that have large animals that may require more planning in the event of an emergency, contact your local Office of Emergency Services for tips and large animal shelter information to aid in your animal disaster planning.

For more information please go to:

Additional Resources:

Last modified 02/26/2024 at 10:11 AM