How to take care of your pet in a Hurricane in Miami, Florida

When a hurricane strikes, the biggest decision that you need to make for your pet is to decide where he/she will stay. If you plan on leaving town and taking your pet with you, make sure you have vaccine records, medications, any special diets, and a health certificate issued by a veterinarian if you are traveling by plane. Make sure in advance that any hotel, friends or family that you
stay with will accept your pet.
Remember, most shelters do not accept pets. If you are planning on leaving town without your pet, make a reservation at a boarding facility early as space fills up quickly and most facilities are booked 1- 2 days before a storm hits. Never leave your pet home alone as this could be very traumatic and even dangerous for them; and absolutely, NEVER leave a pet outdoors during a storm!
Hurricane Andrew and Hurricane Katrina was a sad awakening to the fate of animals during hurricanes. The best advice we can give you is to microchip your pet and register your pet with the microchipping company. If you and your pet become separated in a storm, the microchip is your strongest assurance of being reunited with your pet. If your pet is already microchipped, don’t forget to contact
the microchip company and make sure they have your current address and phone number listed.
If you are staying at home with your pet, set your pet up in a room of the house with no exterior windows or doors. This can be a large
closet, bathroom or interior room. This will prevent injury or escape if a window is broken or a door opens. By being in the interior of the house, it will also reduce the level of noise they are exposed to and help decrease their anxiety level. Keep all of your pet’s evacuation supplies (leash or pet carrier) near the room in case you need to leave in a hurry. Place food and water and newspaper or litter in that room for them.
If your pet is afraid of thunderstorms, a hurricane can be especially traumatic. There are a variety of things we can assist you with. Many people call and ask for sedatives, but it is important for your pet to have a recent check up to make sure he/ she can handle the sedative. The most common sedative we use can drop the blood pressure of a pet which might not be ideal for a geriatric pet or a pet with a heart or kidney problem. Our Hospital is staffed 24/7/365 and we will remain staffed and operational during any Category I, II or III storm . We are staffed during the storms and keep our doors open until the Mayor announces that everyone must be off the roads, then we lock down and do not answer the door until the warning is lifted and the winds have died down. We make every attempt to keep our phone lines open during the storm to answer any of your questions or concerns. If you are in need of our assistance after the storm we will be there even if you cannot reach us due to loss of phone lines. Property of Doral Centre Animal Hospital Emergency & Trauma Center

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