Create A Pet Emergency Kit

by Paul Konrardy

When an emergency or natural disaster occurs, you don’t have much time to grab what you need and head somewhere safer. And if you have pets, you need to have items ready for them as well.

Keep all your pet’s emergency items together in a large bag or bin – something that can be carried easily. Make sure that all family members know the location of the kit, in case of an emergency.

Remember to rotate items such as food, water and medications every two months or so.

Food and Water

  1. 3-7 days’ worth of canned or dry food
  2. Bottled water, at least 7 days’ worth for each pet
  3. Can opener
  4. Pet feeding dishes

WHN TIP – Medical Supplies: Ask your vet about the best medications and items for your pet. Read our First Aid Tips for Pets for a list of supplies to keep in your pet’s first aid kit.

The Red Cross has a Pet First Aid App that includes step-by-step instructions for first aid emergencies, pet profile details, tips for when to call a vet, animal hospital locator and information on including pets in emergency preparedness plans.

The ASPCA has a downloadable list here. Watch this ASPCA video on creating a Pet Poison Prevention Kit here.


  1. A traveling bag, crate, cage or sturdy carrier
  2. Blanket (for comfort or covering cages)
  3. Disposable garbage bags for clean-up, scooper, newspaper
  4. Disposable litter trays (aluminum roasting pans are perfect)
  5. Extra collar, harness and leash (make sure they fit properly)
  6. Litter or training (pee) pads
  7. Flashlight
  8. Grooming/hygiene items (brush, shampoo, nail clippers, etc.)
  9. Liquid dish soap and disinfectant
  10. Paper towels
  11. Towel
  12. Toys

Important Documents (Store in waterproof bag or folder.)

  1. Photocopies of medical and vaccination records
  2. Copies of prescriptions and instructions for medications
  3. Photocopies of pet insurance cards and policies
  4. Photocopies and details of ID tags, tattoos, microchips and licenses
  5. Recent photos of your pets (in case you are separated and need to make “Lost” posters)
  6. A written description of your pet:
  • Pet’s name
  • Breed
  • Sex
  • Age
  • Description of coat, color and markings (scars, spots, etc.)
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Microchip or tattoo numbers
  • Color of collar/leash/tags
  • Any other important details

List of important phone numbers:

  1. Veterinarian
  2. 24-hour emergency veterinary hospital
  3. National poison control hotline (ASPCA Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435)
  4. Pet insurance agent
  5. Local animal shelter
  6. Neighbor who is familiar with your pet
  7. Groomer
  8. Kennel/boarder
  9. Pet sitter
  10. List of pet-friendly hotels/motels nearby

WHN Expert TIP – Emergency Contact Information: “I like to keep an emergency ID info card in my car with me. It includes a calling number so in case I’m unconscious they can call someone I know to come and get the pet instead of taking the pet to a shelter or animal control.” Lisa Peterson, AKC Director of Club Communications and owner, breeder and handler of Norwegian Elkhounds

Photo Credit: Unsplash

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