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Disaster preparedness should include pets

Pet insurance customers might be interested to hear that, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), not enough people are including their pets in disaster preparation.

The poll, released yesterday, found that 35 per cent of dog and cat owners have no plan for dealing with their pets and making them safe during a disaster that forces them to evacuate their homes.

A further 39 per cent of owners said they would leave their pets behind if evacuated, with 19 per cent saying they weren't sure what they would do.

The poll also found that only 28 per cent of dog owners and 24 per cent of cat owners said their pets had microchips embedded into them

"Always evacuate with your pets. If it's not safe for you to stay, it's probably not safe for your pet," ASPCA's director of field investigations and response team Tim Rickey said.

After May's tornado in Joplin, Missouri, the ASPCA took in 1,300 lost or abandoned cats and dogs. 

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