The St. Pete Pet Owner Hurricane Preparedness Guide

The St. Pete Pet Owner Hurricane Preparedness Guide

A dog in a blue rain jacket smiles at the corner

This week is NOAA’s Hurricane Preparedness Week, when those potentially affected by hurricanes are encourage to prepare now as the Atlantic hurricane season approaches.

St. Petersburg is one of the most pet-friendly cities in the country. Part of loving your pet is being prepared for when the worst happens. June marks the beginning of hurricane season here in the Sunshine State and forecasters are predicting another very active season. Our friends at SPCA Tampa Bay have a few tips for pet owners here in the Tampa Bay region.

First and foremost, you need to know your evacuation zone. Pinellas County has also curated a detailed emergency guide for all types of weather and warnings that you can view on their website.

Plan where you’d go if an evacuation is necessary or ordered. For pet friendly shelter information and pre-registration visit Pinellas County’s website. You must pre-register, and mobile home residents are given priority.

There are very few emergency shelters that accept pets and their owners, and they are never large or comfortable. You and your pets will handle the stress of an evacuation far better if you find pet-friendly hotels and motels, or can stay with friends or family. Many popular hotel chains offer pet friendly locations, including La Quinta, Motel 6, Red Roof, Red Lion and Best Western. Some hotel chains that typically aren’t pet friendly may ease their restrictions in case of an emergency but you should call ahead to make sure.


The city launched a mobile alert system for residents, too. You can sign up for the service by clicking here.

Prepare A Basic Pet Disaster Kit 

A pet disaster kit is vital if your family needs to be evacuated. The kit should include food and water for at least five days. Make sure to have a manual can opener, as well, and an extra gallon of water in case your pet is exposed to any hazardous chemicals and needs to be rinsed.

Make sure all medical records and necessary medications are on hand in a waterproof bag/container. It is also wise to carry an excess of garbage bags to clean up after your pet. For cats, have litter, a litter box, and scooper with you.

Harnesses and sturdy leashes are vital, as well as proper carrying crates to transport your pets in. Due to the fact that your pet may be in a crate for hours at a time, it’s best make sure the crate is outfitted with a comfortable blanket and plenty of toys. Ensure that your pet’s identification is up to date on their collar and list out feeding schedules and proper care instructions in case they need to be boarded or placed in foster care.

Alert Stickers Help Keep Rescue Workers Informed

Let rescue workers know that you have animals with a pet alert sticker. The sticker should include the number and types of pets in your home and the number of your veterinarian. You should also have a safe haven planned for your pet well in advance.

Your local veterinarian should have a handy list of preferred facilities for you to browse through. It’s also helpful to identify hotels/motels outside of your city that are accepting of pets

Microchip Your Pets And Enroll In A Recovery Database

It’s always best to prepare for the worst. Technological innovations have allowed for the quick and efficient return of lost pets to their loving home. Microchipping your pet is paramount to their overall security — and Its benefits can be seen beyond hurricane season.

The Humane Society estimates that nearly 10 million cats and dogs are lost each year. Only 22% of dogs and less than 2% of cats that wind up in shelters are reunited with their family. A pet microchip and enrolling in a pet recovery database are easy and affordable steps to making sure you never have to worry — 96% of pets with a microchip are returned to their families.


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