Evacuation Decisions

To develop appropriate plans for voluntary evacuations that best suit you and your family, be contemplating the different types of crises and emergencies you may face. Later we will discuss many important considerations and planning tools to complete your evacuation plans, but families with pets will want to give additional consideration to the “type of evacuation” they might face (see below). Coordinate the information offered here with the family evacuation scenarios presented in the next section.

Evacuation Scenarios

Evacuation from Home/Farm/Ranch:

If you are with your pets at the time you choose to evacuate, be sure your plans include temporary living accommodations where your pets are welcome. This may be with friends, family, other stables or even hotel lodging. We recommend pet families verify each of your options as pet-friendly and that you have a few options in each direction from your home/farm/ranch.

For each option, include the name, address and phone number in your Personal Preaction™ Plan Notebook

If you have horses, keep your horse trailer parked on high ground, ready to load and with enough feed for a few days. Obviously, don’t allow regular feed levels to become depleted before restocking.

Keep halters and leads where they are easily accessible. For additional information on pets, horses and other livestock, see information courtesy of The Humane Society at

See our “Disaster Planning Resources for Pet Families” at the end of this section for a list of lodging options that advertise acceptance of pets (usually limited to dogs and cats). We recommend you check with all locations you include in your plan to verify they accept your specific pet/s.

Evacuation from Work

If you are at work and your pets are at home, how will your plan address their care? If an evacuation is regional and you cannot return home, arrange for someone to gain entry to your home to remove and care for them. In the event you know you will be able to return more quickly, make plans for someone to either pick up your pet or use the provisions from your Pet Emergency Kit to care for them daily.

Evacuation due to a Disaster at Dog Boarding, Daycare or Stables

If your pet spends time away from home, be sure your plan includes notification procedures, alternate routes to get there and contacts near the facility. This will ensure immediate pick-up if evacuation is required. You should also ask the facility providing such services to discuss what plans they have for emergencies

Next>> Month 8: Useful Tools