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Severe Weather / Emergency Preparedness Plan

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Severe Weather/Emergency Preparedness Plan

Severe weather can show up without warning. Do you have a plan in place for severe weather or an emergency? Do you have a bag filled with everything your pet needs for an extended period of time? The best thing you can do is have a plan in place before the weather hits.

Having your pet’s essentials ready in an emergency bag will take a lot of stress off of you. When the severe weather arrives, all you have to remember is to grab your pets, their emergency kit, and head to shelter. Below, we discuss how to prepare for a severe weather/emergency and we will provide a list of items you should have in your pet’s emergency kit.

How to Prepare

Pick a “safe room”

First, you need to pick a safe place in your home that will accommodate you, your family, and your pets. Put your family’s emergency kit and your pet’s kit in the designated safe room. Close off unsafe nooks and crannies that your frightened pet may want to hide in. Move dangerous objects out of the safe room. Some objects you may want to remove would be sharp tools or toxic chemicals.

Identification

Make sure your pet has some form of identification. In the event that your pet gets separated from you during, or after, the severe weather, this is extremely important. If your pet does not have proper identification, he/she is less likely to return home. A few examples of ID’s are microchips, rabies tags, and custom tags with your personal information on it.

Outside pets

Never leave your animals outside in severe weather. If you have outside pets, please take them inside before the severe weather hits. If you try to gather your pet during the storm, they may run off or hide before you can get to them.

Find a safe place to stay

If your home is uninhabitable after the severe weather, or if you have to evacuate, make sure you have a place to stay that allows pets. Do not leave your pet at home. If your home isn’t safe for you, it isn’t safe for your pets. Check to see to if you can stay with family members or call around to hotels.

Some hotels are pet friendly, you just have to ask. If the place you are staying does not allow pets, you can call boarding facilities, vet clinics, and pet sitters to see if they offer any type of assistance in emergency situations.

In the event you can’t make it home

If you are away and unable to get home before severe weather hits, make sure you know someone who is willing to care for your pet. If you have a neighbor or a friend that your pet is familiar with, give them a key and have them check on your pet or take your pet home with them until you are able to make it there. If your pet takes medications, make sure the person watching your pet knows how to administer them.

After the disaster

Do not allow your pet to roam freely after severe weather. Keep your pet on a leash or in a carrier until after you walk the premises and make sure everything is safe. Your pet may act differently after the event due to stress. Try to get back to your normal routine as soon as possible. If after a week your pet isn’t back to normal, call your veterinary office and schedule an appointment.

Emergency Kit

Depending on the situation, it may be a few days before everything goes back to normal. So you need to make sure you have enough supplies to get you through weather. We suggest that you pack enough items to last 5 – 7 days. Here are some of the items we recommend you put in your pet’s emergency kit:

  • Food
  • Water
  • Medications
  • Garbage bags – for waste disposal
  • Extra leashes, harnesses, collars
  • Carriers
  • Current photo – in case your pet runs away
  • Medical records and other important documentation
  • Paper towels
  • Food & water bowls
  • First aid supplies – bandages, wraps, gauze pads, peroxide
  • Duct tape – if carrier or food/water bowls get broken
  • Can opener – if you pet eats canned food
  • Jacket/sweater if it is cold
  • Blankets

Cat Carrier Tips

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Does fur fly when you try to put your kitty in the carrier? Taking an already frightened or painful cat and forcing him into the carrier can be extremely stressful and can create an anxious kitty for the vet. Below are some tricks to help lessen the struggle and stress associated with the cat carrier.

1) Choosing the Right Carrier: Hard plastic carriers that can be taken apart are best. One reason is that the carrier can be taken apart so the cat can sit in the bottom half where he feels safe. If the carrier does not come apart, pick a plastic one that has an opening at the top and front for easy access.

2) Keep the Carrier Out: Make sure that you keep the cat carrier out and accessible instead of stashing it away. Put blankets or soft fleece in the carrier and put it in your kitty’s favorite room. Eventually, your cat may associate his carrier with being a safe relaxing place.

3) Feeding Outside of Carrier: Try feeding your cat right outside of his carrier. When he becomes comfortable with this, move the food bowl right inside the carrier so he has to put his head in to get to his food. After awhile, he will start eating inside his carrier without hesitation.

4) No Tricks: Do not try to trick or coax your kitty into carrier and then pack up and leave. This may make him suspicious for future outings. Instead, try putting some catnip or his favorite toy in there.

5) No Chasing: Chasing your cat around the house and forcing him in his carrier will only agitate him. Instead, try withholding his food for a couple hours and then put some of his food in the carrier. If this doesn’t work, go to the room your cat is in, shut the door, and calmly pick up your pet and gently place him in the carrier. If your cat doesn’t want to go into the carrier, wrap him up like a burrito and slide him in. Just make sure you don’t wrap him too tightly.

6) Make the Carrier Comfortable: If you are using a hard plastic carrier, place a warm blanket or towel in there for your pet to sit on. This will make the carrier slightly more comfortable and also, if your cat urinates during the car ride, the towel/blanket will absorb some of the urine.

In addition to these tips, you can try using a Nurture Calm Feline Pheromone Collar or spray the blanket/towel with Feliway. The pheromone collars mimic hormones that a mother cat produces to calm her kittens and Feliway mimics the hormones cats give off when they mark their territory as being safe.

If nothing you have tried works, give us a call. One our front desk associates will express your concerns to the doctor and see if the doctor has any additional suggestions for you to try.

Payment Type Phase-Out

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We wanted our clients to be aware that we will no longer be accepting the Citi Health Card by Citi Bank as of June 2015.

You can click on the link (highlighted words above) to view their webpage for an image of the card in the event that you need verify if you own one of these cards.

**Please do not confuse this with CARE CREDIT.
**We will continue to provide great payment options through CARE CREDIT by Synchrony Bank.

Canine Influenza

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Veterinary medicine is a compassionate industry with patient safety and well-being as its primary objective. Pet Care Clinic wants to thank Veterinary Specialty Center out of Buffalo Grove, IL for allowing us to share the following information they distributed about canine influenza.

What you should know about CIV or the dog flu

  • Just like the human flu virus, the dog flu is an airborne virus that is spread by coughing and sneezing via aerosolized respiratory secretions. The virus may spread through contaminated objects (kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars, leashes, etc.) and people moving between infected and uninfected dogs. It is not spread via urine or feces.
  • The virus can remain alive and able to infect on surfaces for up to 48 hours, on clothing for 24 hours, and on hands for 12 hours. It is easily killed by commonly used disinfectants–bleach, ammonia, even ordinary hand soap.
  • Dogs are infected with the virus for 2-4 days before the start of symptoms. They are actually the most contagious during this time, before they are exhibiting signs of illness. Contagiousness decreases dramatically during the first 4 days of illness but may continue up to 7 days in most dogs and, rarely, up to 10 days in a few dogs.
  • It is highly contagious from dog to dog but rarely fatal.

Symptoms include

  • Fever (usually low grade), cough, nasal discharge, sneezing, ocular discharge, lethargy and anorexia.
  • More severely affected dogs can exhibit a high fever with an increased respiratory rate and other signs of pneumonia or bronchopneumonia (usually from secondary bacterial or mycoplasmal infections).
  • To protect your dog from the dog flu, keep your dog away from high-risk areas that include dog parks, kennels, doggy day care, grooming, training facilities and pet stores. Avoid popular walking areas for dogs as well.

We again thank VSC. You may learn more about Veterinary Specialty Center by clicking on the following web link:

http://www.vetspecialty.com/