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Hurricane Season Begins June 1 - Pets Need Protection, Too!

Thursday, May 22, 2008 General News J E 4
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KENILWORTH, N.J., May 21

Pets In Danger from Storms and Natural Disasters

Tens of thousands of domestic and wild animals perished from drowning,starvation, disease, and misfortune, while many others were separated from thepeople who love them as a result of Hurricane Katrina alone, according to theHumane Society of the United States.

Simple Way to Help Reunite Pets

Cat and dog owners can help protect their pets by visiting theirveterinarian before hurricane season gets underway for a simple andinexpensive procedure to implant a microchip and register their pet in anational, secure recovery database such as the HomeAgain Proactive PetRecovery Network.

Even the most conscientious pet owners can, during times of naturaldisasters, become separated from their pets. Even pets described by theirowners as "indoor-only" are vulnerable. According to a 2006 Journal of theAmerican Veterinary Medical Association study by Linda Lord, DVM, PhD,assistant professor, Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, 41percent of people looking for a lost cat reported their cats as "indoor only"pets. As another hurricane season begins, pet owners are reminded of theimportance of permanent identification through microchipping and enrollment.Planning ahead and having pets microchipped and registered now couldpotentially save many lives and reduce the burden on animal welfare firstresponders and overcrowding pressure on local animal shelters.

Tips for Pet Owners

The Humane Society of the United States provides suggestions for petowners including preparing a pet disaster kit, which should include:

Other useful items include newspapers, paper towels, plastic trash bags,grooming items and household bleach. More disaster preparedness informationcan be found athsus.org/hsus_field/hsus_disaster_center/resources/disaster_preparedness_for_pets.html. (If URL does not hyperlink please copy and paste into browser).

What is Home Again

Home Again is a national and comprehensive pet recovery service that goesbeyond microchipping. Home Again members benefit from world-class pet recoveryservices and other services designed to keep pets safe and well, including:

For More Information:

Interviews are available with Home Again pet identification experts aswell as local veterinarians in your area who can discuss the importance ofpermanent identification for cats and dogs and the critical step ofregistering in a national database to help ensure that pets can be reunitedwith their owners -- including following natural disasters such as hurricanes.For more information on Home Again, visit http://www.homeagain.com .* Food and water for at least five days for each pet, bowls and a manual can opener if you are packing canned pet food. * Medications and medical records stored in a waterproof container and a first aid kit. A pet first aid book is also good to include. * Cat litter box, litter, garbage bags to collect all pets' waste, and litter scoop. * Sturdy leashes, harnesses, and carriers to transport pets safely and to ensure that your pets can't escape. Carriers should be large enough for the animal to stand comfortably, turn around and lie down. Your pet may have to stay in the carrier for hours at a time while you are away from home. Be sure to have a secure cage with no loose objects inside it to accommodate smaller pets. These may require blankets or towels for bedding and warmth, and other special items. * Current photos and descriptions of your pets to help others identify them in case you and your pets become separated and to prove that they are yours. * Pet beds and toys, if you can easily take them, to reduce stress. * Information about your pets' feeding schedules, medical condition
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