SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WEHT) – The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) wants you to know that June is Pet Preparedness Month. They encourage you to learn about the difficulties you and your pets could face should there be an emergency.

“A pet is an important part of your family and it’s equally important to include your pet in emergency plans,” said IEMA Director Alicia Tate-Nadeau.

IEMA officials encourage pet parents to come up with a plan ahead of time to protect their pets in the event of an emergency and offer up helpful tips.

The tips include:

  • Have an evacuation plan for your pet
  • Create a pet preparedness kit with medications, non-perishable food, water, bowls, cat litter and pan, waste bags, a blanket, bedding for pocket/exotic pets, toys, first aid kit, current photos of you and your pets, and copies of medical records
  • Have up-to-date identification on your pet
  • Choose a safe place ahead of time if you need to evacuate
  • If you must shelter-in-place, identify a safe area of your home where all can stay together – keep dogs on leashes and cats in carriers
  • Coordinate with a trusted friend, relative, or neighbor to take care of pets and their disaster kits, then meet you a specific location
  • Don’t allow pets to roam loose in a damaged home or neighborhood

Pet parents are encouraged to plan ahead for their pet’s care, as many shelters don’t allow pets due to health and safety concerns.

You can find more information and tips here.