Preparedness for our larger Furry Friends


In California, September is known as Preparedness month. The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) is reminding all Californians about the -importance of preparing your entire family – and that includes your pets and livestock.

Preparedness Month is about being prepared for all types of emergencies, preparing yourself and your pets to leave in an emergency can help eliminate some of the stress that an emergency brings.

Cal OES is committed to ensuring your furry family members are safe and prepared, this is done through CARES. California Animal Response Emergency System (CARES) works in partnership with California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).

Cal OES knows that animals play an essential role in your family and CARES was created to provide operational guidance to assist with all aspects of animal care and control in the event of a disaster or emergency. In addition, CARES provides resources for the public, for animal businesses, for shelters, and for emergency planners.

Steps to take ahead of an evacuation:

  • Have a plan: Know a safe place you can take your pets before disasters or emergencies happen.
  • Develop a buddy system: Plan with neighbors, friends, or family to make sure someone is available to care for or help evacuate your animals if you need help.
  • Contact your local animal shelter: Make sure your local shelter takes large animals or determine another place you can take them in an emergency.
  • Build an emergency kit: Prepare a kit with the essentials to keep your animals safe during an evacuation.
    • Food
    • Water
    • Medicine
    • Some form of identification
    • Medical records and vaccinations

A little preparation with large animals/ livestock will make an evacuation easier for all involved. Train them to be caught and loaded in trailers easily. Attach an ID tag to their halter or lead rope.

Remember, emergencies can be just as scary for animals as they are for humans and including them.

Additional pet preparedness resources:

Amid Flooding Concerns, Cal OES Reminds Californians to Prepare for Large Animal Evacuations | Cal OES News

CDFA – AHFSS – AHB – EPRS – CARES – Animal Shelter Documents and Resources

Animal Preparedness | California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services Pet and Animal Emergency Planning

Disaster Preparedness Livestock (