Here we go again. It appears Ike will make landfall in a few days somewhere on the Texas coastline. This is my attempt at a public service announcement for those who may need to evacuate. Don't forget your pets! After Katrina, many human shelters will now accept pets as long as they are in crates. Please don't just leave them behind to fend for themselves.
Include food and water for your pets as you go over your preparedness list. Without the air conditioning most pets are accustomed to, they'll need almost as much water as a human if the power gets knocked out for days or weeks. Make sure you've got a week or even two weeks' worth of food, and don't forget to check levels of any pet medications. If your area is devastated, your vet probably won't be available for refills for a while. Speaking of medications, some dogs and cats get neurotic with storm noise. In a hurricane, the noise levels are so deafening you don't even notice thunder, and it goes on hour after hour after hour until you think you'll lose your mind - or your life. Imagine what that might do to a dog who freaks in a garden-variety thunderstorm? Ask your vet for doggie downers if you think it's necessary. Better safe than sorry.
Keep newspapers or wee-wee pads ready in case the weather in your area is so bad that your dogs can go to the outside comfort station. I've been through a Cat 3 storm and don't care to repeat the experience. My dog Maggie will definitely need drugs if Ike comes our way.
That's about all I can think up for now. Anyone else out there please add to this thread. I'm always ready to hear new ideas. Has anyone else here been through a major hurricane, and with pets? I'd love to hear about it, and maybe those stories will convince people to evacuate when the track becomes more certain. Y'all be safe out there!
Crates are always good for safety reasons, but like you, are dogs are just large enough that we couldn't fit 2 crates in our vehicles. It's mostly people that need to use public disaster shelters who will need to use crates. Shoot, if we didn't have anywhere to go, we'd just pack up the camping gear and stay in a state park until it was all over. No worries about shelters or motels that won't accept pets. I'd rather live in the truck and keep the pets with us than abandon them or have them quarantined off in a different room from me at a shelter, but anything is better than leaving pets behind to fend for themselves.
Guess I'd better get started pulling in all the flyaway stuff outside. Again. We've got serious hurricane fatigue around here.
Harris County (Houston) and surrounding coastal counties are now under a Hurricane Watch. The following message is from the National Weather Service:
IT IS RECOMMENDED YOU EVACUATE WITH YOUR PETS. BE SURE TO TAKE A
PET CARRIER...LEASH...VACCINATION RECORDS...AND FOOD FOR YOUR PET.
IF YOU EVACUATE TO A SHELTER...YOUR PETS WILL BE BOARDED AT A
We're planning to ride this thing out at home, pets and all. Lucky for us we live and work at a VERY sturdy hotel complex. The buildings are all steel and concrete, and we have never flooded, even in storm surges of hurricanes past. I'm still not looking forward to our visit from Cousin Ike, though. We have the luxury of moving to interior parts of the hotel that have no windows, so that will keep us safe from flying glass if any windows do manage to get broken. I am, however, worried about several of our friends who live in town. They do wildlife rescue and rehab and have so many animals on their properties that they can't move all of them to shelters. Also, in TX, animals are sent to shelters apart from their humans, so the rescuer/rehabbers can't expect the animal shelters to take care of raptors and reptiles, so they will have to ride it out in regular homes. These homes have been through hurricanes in the past and have managed just fine, so hopefully they're sturdy enough to make it through Ike. Another friend of ours raises birds and can't possibly move their 200 parrots, so I'm hoping that they make it through OK.
As of now, Ike is supposed to make landfall about an hour down the coast from us, so please keep us in your thoughts and prayers. Our town is not under mandatory evacuation, so that's one good thing. I'll keep y'all posted as new news is available.
I was hoping to hear from you! When they started talking about Matagorda county for a landfall point yesterday I thought of you down on the coast. Glad you hear you've got a safe spot to hole up in. We.. don't. NWS now says my area of far west Houston will have 100 mph winds. Last time that happened was 1983 with Alicia, and the trees are a whole lot bigger now. Guess there's a reason we have insurance - including flood.
Catch y'all later. I've got a ton of work to do today. Be safe out there and don't forget your pets!
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