Sunday, October 4, 2009

Will you abandon those who love you most to save yourself? PURR 4 DISASTER PREPAREDNESS

Isn't it funny when something happens to your most ordinary day that connects with something else larger, much larger, than yourself? My local health department sent out a brochure and postcard to all residents of the county where I live. It was all about natural, or (heavens) man-disaster, and what part, if any, my household would play if one should take place.

On that card there were spots for doctors and nurses and contractors, and a little spot to write in what you would do if a disaster struck our area. I wrote in "animal rescue and animal welfare". I mailed that card yesterday and once it is received my name will be placed in a data base to be used by the members of our response team.

I am pleased to say that, even though my town is small (15,000 pop.) we have in place written instructions/protocol for the rescue, shelter and reunification of animals with their humans - large and small - should disaster strike.

On Monday, why don't you call your county seat to find out if you have a plan for animals during crisis. If not, call the rescue agencies in your area, call a meeting, and get busy on putting one together. One thing I now without even asking is that people who live alone, seniors, the disabled - none of them will leave their companions behind without duress. As for me, I have prepared an emergency kit for my animals with food, bottled water, copies of their inoculation records, a small First Aid kit, extra plastic ID tags, collars and leashes, and a couple of toys. One is in the trunk of my car and the other in my basement storage area. About every six months or so I rotate the food to keep it fresh.

Now, after you've read everything and checked out the links, look into the eyes of your cats and dogs, birds, even fish and turtles. Then - imagine telling them "good-bye" and that you are sorry but you have to leave - not knowing if you were telling them the truth. Not pleasant, right? Today is the day to get busy - so GET BUSY!

Please, let Confucius know that you are participating this week in the PURR and that you will do your part in keeping those who are most helpless safe - and - ALIVE! Mimi and the gang.


Every year, hurricanes, tornadoes, hazardous-materials incidents, floods, earthquakes and other disasters threaten the animals who are so important to our lives. Members of The HSUS National Disaster Animal Response Team (NDART™) learn how to prepare their families, help their community be better prepared and rescue and shelter animals when a disaster or crisis happens in their community or across the country.

If you are interested in joining HSUS NDART™ please read information on the following topics and recommended/required training: Prepare Your Family and Pets, Volunteer at your Local Animal Shelter

Training: NDART™ and Emergency Animal Sheltering Training, Federal Emergency Management Agency Training, Help Other Organizations, The HSUS National Disaster Animal Response Team, Application to Join NDART™

Prepare Your Family and Pets

As a trained responder, your first priority is to make sure your family and pets are taken care of when a disaster or crisis strikes. Make a plan now, because when they are safe, you will be a more effective responder.

Volunteering builds great skills
Start volunteering at your local animal shelter to gain practical experience in animal care and handling. This is excellent experience you can gain right in your own community.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Independent Study Program

Any disaster responder, whether paid or volunteer, must take the following courses in order to be part of disaster response:
Incident Command System (IS 100)
Incident Command System for Single Resources/Initial Action Incidents (IS 200)
National Incident Management System (NIMS), an Introduction (IS 700)

The HSUS strongly recommends all its responders take the following FEMA courses:
Animals in Disaster: Module A—Awareness and Preparedness (IS 10)
Animals in Disaster: Module B—Community Planning (IS 11)
Livestock in Disasters (IS 111)

The FEMA Independent Study program has many useful and informative courses, which are quick and easy to take at home. For those interested in holding a supervisory-level position during a disaster, please review the information contained in the FEMA Fact Sheet.

Help Other Organizations Active in Disaster Response

Are you unsure how you would react in a disaster situation, or even in a small-scale local emergency? Get some practical experience close to home and help your community, too.

American Red Cross:
While the Red Cross does not have response teams for animals, many local emergencies involving families do involve their pets. By being part of your local Red Cross Disaster Action Team (DAT), you can help pets and people, too. The Red Cross does not set up shelters for pets, but they do care about pets in emergencies. They need to work with local humane groups to help the community provide disaster services to families with companion animals.

Locate your local American Red Cross chapter and look for these recommended classes for NDART™ volunteers:
  • Human first aid/CPR
  • Pet first aid/CPR
  • Mass Care
  • Shelter Operations
Introduction to Disaster Services

Citizens Emergency Response Teams: The CERT program teaches you how to take care of your household and neighborhood until more help can arrive. CERT also trains citizens to be better prepared to respond to emergency situations in their communities. When emergencies happen, CERT members can give critical support to first responders, provide immediate assistance to victims, and organize spontaneous volunteers at a disaster site. CERT members can also help with non-emergency projects that help improve the safety of the community.

The HSUS Disaster Animal Response Team

The HSUS National Disaster Animal Response Team consists of animal care and control professionals, emergency services and rescue professionals, and other qualified volunteers. Team members are trained in community disaster response and preparedness as well as specialized response techniques for rescuing animals affected by disasters.

If you have skills and experience in animal handling, emergency/public services, or other disaster work and are interested in joining our DART, please explore the self-study courses listed above. Once you have taken several of these courses, particularly the FEMA Independent Study Programs, please visit the HSUS Animal Disaster Response Training Calendar to see when and where you can take HSUS disaster courses. Because of the overwhelming response from people wishing to be volunteers, please understand that it may take a little while for us to get back to you.

To apply to become a member of the HSUS National Disaster Animal Response Team, please fill out the application at Thank you for your support, and please make sure you have a disaster plan for your own family, including pets!

If you've read this far and took some notes or bookmarked some of the links, THANK YOU from the beating hearts filled with unconditional love that rest at your feet. Mimi and her gang.

Week 17 of Purrs 4 Peace details are as follows:
Week seventeen’s appointed time is Sunday, October 4, 2009.
  • Participants should purr for three minutes commencing at 3 p.m. EDT (U.S.) which is 8:00 p.m. (20:00 hrs.) BST in the U.K.
  • The cat’s human staff should assist their cats with the project by stroking and nuzzling the cat at the appointed time.
  • Please post your cat name and the country you purr in at as a COMMENT if you are participating in this historic project. (posting a link to your own website-if you have one-is encouraged.) Or let me know by message on twitter or facebook.
  • Posting purrs on facebook ( Acolytes of Confucius Cat or as friend to Alley Mason) and twitter (@ConfuciusCat) is encouraged, since it inspires purring in others, but not required. On twitter please use #purrs4peace in your tweets.


Cheysuli and gemini said...

Our community also has a disaster preparedness course that you can take for free from the community center.

fini mahadami said...

wow, isn't that great to have such campaigns in your neighborhood..Unfortunately I'm living in a place where animals' welfare are not in the list. Stray dogs will be sent to the pound and shot straight away, no questions asked..It's a norm here..stray cats are everywhere, especially in a market and restaurants..It broke my heart to see these strays and to think about the privilege my pets are having at home.. It's unfair..But there's nothing much to do..Even my vet complained that he received lots of strays every month dumped at his clinic in the middle of the night..
Now that you talked about disaster preparedness, well, it got me thinking about it..We'll have discussion with my family member how to go about it..Thank you so much, I leaarn a lot from your writing.


LC, Ayla, and Iza said...

We are all micro-chipped for ID, there is a knapsack fullof canned foods, an The Big Thing has pictures of us in his "runaway folder". Among other stuff, of course...

We love Luna said...

Well done, we will be purring here with you dear friends!
Thanks for this information post!
purrs and love

Anonymous said...

Wow, you really are prepared! I'll have to get a kit ready for the girls and go check out a course of action. And we'll be purring with you today too!

Bruce said...

Good post!
your pal,
Bruce the cat...ready to purr:)

SeaThreePeeO said...

We hope to be as prepeared!

Cory said...

My mom has some work to do, we are sort of prepared but not totally prepared. Thanks for the reminder!

Confucius Cat said...

What a great job you've done with your post. So much valuable information. Thank you for supporting Purrs 4 Peace with your intelligent and entertaining blog. Much appreciated. Purrs.

Anonymous said...

You are very wise and wonderful!

Gracie said...

You have so much good information at your place. A lot to think about. No time to think about things when bad happenings are going on around. Will have to check out here to see how things are set up. My mom will drag me along but we need to make sure those that don't have someone to help them.

Happy Cat Family said...

Great post!

Meowmy has some of those things ready too - we have a "safe room", where meowmy keeps our carriers with our vet documents, harnesses, first aid stuff... She also has food and water and once the warning start coming off on TV, everything goes into this room. We are not microshipped yet, but this is on meowmy's list. There is also a sign on the window saying in case of emergency to save us 3 kitties:)

Sweet Praline said...

Great post! I must get my mom to check on this.

Amy and The House of Cats said...

We always worry about the animals when there are storms here - I wonder if ours will be ok but I never thought about shelter kitties and doggies. We will have to find out what happens to them in our area to keep them safe.

Preparedness Pro said...

This is a crucial topic of emergency preparedness for me. Pets are every bit as important in an emergency as a family member. It's crucial to plan for pets in an emergency! Glad you brought this up to the pet community.

Anonymous said...

An insightful post on Our family cat-a-bloggy
I did come across a website It’s has all information on first aid emergencies. It has information on Human emergencies and even for pets like cat or dog. Hope it help you guys too.

Signature: Online First Aid Kit