Natural disasters like hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods leave in their wake massive footprints of damage, which often results in unhealthy and dangerous living conditions for both man and dogs.
Life after a natural disaster becomes very daunting. More so for our four-legged buddies, it is just as hard if not more on Fido as it is on you. But what can you do?
Read also: “Plan for a Natural Disaster With Your Dog“
Be a friend in time of need.
Yes. You can help alleviate the suffering, lessen the negative impact or save the life of man’s best friend at moments such as this and be the next hero.
This article will outline what you can do to help dogs after natural disasters.
Let me show you how:
- Sharing is caring
Sometimes all it takes to help reunite a dog owner with their fur baby is the information you share. Post information about lost dogs via social networks, such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
- Reach out to local shelters
Don’t be an island. Reach out. Find out what they need the most and try to be of assistance.
Donate money or Items like dog crates, food bowls, dog food, sheets, towels,to organizations like the Humane Society of the United States, Animal Defense League, and other such humanitarian organizations. These resources are used for the upkeep of rescued dogs and other pets.
Raise money by crowd sourcing of from friends and family for displaced animals. Every dollar raised can help to save the life of an animal in need.
- Become a volunteer
Sometimes, money is not all there is to give! Your time and skills can also be of great use to local shelters and animal organizations.
You don’t necessarily have to be a veterinarian before you decide to volunteer. After disasters, every skill count. You can help feed or pamper the dogs, assist with logistics and documentation or help dog owners find their dogs.
- Foster a dog
Open the door to your home and show some love. By fostering a dog, you care for them and increase their chances of survival. That’s not all; you also create more room for other displaced and vulnerable dogs to find a place in shelter homes.
It is not uncommon for shelter homes to match you with a dog with correct temperament that suite your lifestyle and ability.
- Adoption is a good option too
By adopting a new dog, you give them a forever home and the opportunity to live a happy and quality life.
Attempt to rescue dogs you see from flood water, rooftops, along the road or other dangerous situations.
Are you a dog owner? Here is what you must do:
- Have a plan
Always be ready! Develop a written disaster plan and stock up your disaster kit to incorporate the needs of your furry family member. The plan will be your guide during and after natural disasters strikes.
While developing your plan, incorporate the evacuation information and preparedness guidelines of where you live in your plan.
Your disaster kit should be packed with items like leashes, food, treats, medication, water, identification tags and other essential things.
Having a plan before a disaster will significantly improve the odds of surviving post-disaster in most cases.
- First Aid
After a disaster, physically examine your dog for injuries. If any, provide first aid immediately.
- Reassure your dog
Talking to them gently and pamper them to ease the anxiety and shock as a result of the disaster.The effect of the disaster might leave your dog disoriented and lost, so be patient while handling or relating with them.
- Don’t leave your dog behind
They are family and as a caregiver you are responsible for their safety. Leaving them behind amplifies their vulnerability and leaves them exposed to dangers.
- Keep your dog leashed
It will prevent them from wandering into dangerous and precarious environments like unstable buildings, contaminated flood water, downed live power lines or toxic spills.
- Discard all dog toys or items that have been in contact with floodwater or where applicable, clean and wash them with bleach and hot water.
- When re-introducing your dog back to your home or a new home/neighborhood, familiarize them to the new environment gradually by walking with them on a leash around the house or neighborhood.
There you have it. Use the information contained in this article to help dogs after natural disasters, and it will significantly improve their chances of survival.