Tornadoes are most prevalent during March-June months but have shown a recent spike in appearance after a relatively sparse season. Due to the unpredictable nature of these beasts, here are some guidelines, to shelter your pet during a tornado.
A five-step guide to getting ready for a Tornado with your pet
1. Prepare for the cyclone
Preparation is key for preparing for a tornado. If you have an emergency bag, your pet’s necessities and know the potential signs of an impending cyclone you are three steps ahead of danger. Some indications a tornado is on the way include a dark, greenish sky, large hail without rain and the sound of an oncoming freight train. If you hear or see any indications of an oncoming twister, take cover.
2. Protect from disaster
A tornado cannot be outrun or out-driven. So if you are in the vicinity of a tornado do not attempt to outsmart the twister. Seek shelter immediately, preferably in a room with no windows or doors and cover you and your pet’s neck and head. Similarly many opt to seek shelter in a basement, center hallway in an office building, or safe room. According to our Trupanion staff veterinarian, Dr. Sarah Nold, DVM “Below ground shelters are considered the best protection against tornadoes.” Above all, if you have the ability to evacuate or relocate to a sanctioned shelter please do at your earliest convenience.
3. Check a trusted source
Technology does make life better sometimes, so consider downloading helpful apps to help identify when a disaster may strike. Some options include the National Weather Service (NOAA), FEMA, American Red Cross and The Weather Channel apps.
4. Check your home
Make sure your home is safe for your family and your pet before making a permanent return. Check that you are out of the path of the storm and inspect in and around your home for debris that might be dangerous for you and your pet. You don’t need anyone getting injured due to glass or sharp objects on the ground.
5. Attend to your families needs
The emotional and physical stress of a natural disaster can take a toll on your pet’s well-being. Stay with your pet and check- in with them before, during, and after the storm. Similarly, check your pet for any lesions or signs and symptoms of ongoing distress. Seek immediate veterinary care if needed.
Tornadoes are aggressive and impulsive disasters by nature. The unpredictability, along with the powerful wind strength is enough to topple buildings and cars in one strike. Be prepared with an emergency plan, supplies, a place to shelter and resources to ensure the safety of your furry family members.