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How to Pack an Emergency Go-Bag for Your Pet

You never know when you and your best buddy might need to leave home, fast. Whether you’re getting away from a hurricane, a wildfire or another disaster, you should have a bug-out bag — also called a go-bag — packed with supplies for your pet and stored near the door of your home. Yes, emergencies are rare, but you need to be prepared just in case the poo hits the fan. Here’s what you should pack.

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Cleaning and Grooming Supplies

Whether you’re bunking with a friend until you go home or at an official public shelter, you’ll need to clean up after your pup or kitty and keep them tidy. Pack poop bags, paper towels, a spray bottle of disinfectant cleaner and garbage bags for cleanup. For a cat, pack litter and a disposable litter box. (Aluminum roasting pans are ideal.) Pack a brush or comb and a can of dry shampoo for pets. Throw in an old beach towel, too, for larger spills or for your pet to cuddle on.

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Medical and Vaccination Records

You will need to prove he’s been vaccinated to take him into a shelter or board him, so put copies of your fur child’s vaccination records in a waterproof container, on a USB, or take photos of them and store them on your phone. If you can’t get back home right away, copies of medical records will help you get treatment for your pet if necessary. Write down your pet’s feeding schedule and any behavior issues and pack it with the records.

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If your pet takes medications daily, pack a week’s worth in a waterproof container. Be sure to check the expiration date on the meds every six months and rotate them out, using the older meds now and packing newer ones in the go-bag.

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Extra Collar and Leash

Your dog wears a collar and you keep a leash by the door, but pack spares in the go-bag just in case you have to leave fast and forget the leash. Make your dog or cat wear tags with up-to-date identification information. P.S. Your pet should be microchipped. If he’s not, do it.

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