Preparing your Pets
Do not leave your pets at home unattended during a hurricane. Whatever plans you make for yourself , please include your pets by reviewing the Pet Supply Kit. Miami-Dade County offers pet-friendly evacuation centers for families to go along with their furry, feathered and scaly friends — up to four pets per family. Evacuation centers, however, are shelters of last resort. Placement in the pet-friendly shelters is not guaranteed. The centers will accept pets on a first-come, first-served basis, and are subject to some restrictions. You must bring with you the following information:
- Proof of residency.
- Medical and current vaccination records for each pet.
- Must have a visible Miami-Dade County dog license and annual rabies vaccinations for both dogs and cats.
- Animals may be required to remain in carriers or crates.
Pet owners must bring supplies for themselves and their pet. At least one family member must remain in the evacuation center with the pet. For complete information on pet safety during a disaster, call the Miami-Dade County Answer Center at 311 or go to the MDC Pet Preparedness page. The County will announce (through local and social media) the locations of the pet-friendly shelters when they are open.
Evacuation centers provide shelter of last resort, but if you want your pets and household to be as comfortable as possible, have a plan in place now as to where you can bring your pets. Make arrangements with family or friends inland who are willing and able to accommodate people and animals for up to to weeks. Many hotels and other accommodations accept pets, some loosen their pet policies in the event of emergencies. Two informative websites to check out are petswelcome.com and gopetfriendly.com.
No matter what arrangements you make for your pets, make sure that they stay in a comfortable environment, wearing proper identification, and with access to enough food and water for two weeks. Never leave your pet outside on a leash during a storm.