Make a plan for your pets in case a disaster strikes

Have a plan in place before you need it 

Hillsborough County’s pet-accommodating shelters are located throughout the County but should be seen as a last resort. It's important to make a plan for your pets before disaster strikes. Planning ahead is the best way to protect your pet, including where you will stay if you and your family are evacuated. Please check the Stay Safe page for the current status of shelters and for possible additional shelters that may be designated as pet friendly. 

Evacuate to a friend or family member’s home 

A friend or relative outside of an evacuation zone can be a great option for evacuating with your pet. Be sure to include this friend or family member in your plan ahead of time by having a conversation and agreeing on what your evacuation plan looks like together.

If your friend or family member also has a pet, introduce your pets ahead of time to get them comfortable with one another. If comfort can’t be achieved, create a plan that includes where each pet will be contained in the house to prevent fights or injuries.

Looking for pet friendly hotels? A simple internet search of "pet friendly hotels" includes multiple options.

Things to consider with pet-accommodating shelters

  • If you must go to a pet-accommodating shelter, here are some important considerations: 
  • The County’s pet-accommodating shelters have limited space
  • Your pet will be housed separately from your family, and there will be limited access to visit with your pet
  • You are responsible for the care and well-being of your pet. You will be allowed a minimum of twice a day to feed, clean, and walk your pet. 
  • Make sure your pet's County registration tag is current. If it is expired or lost, bring the rabies certificate to the Pet Resource Center and get a replacement. After updating your pet's tag, take a trip to your vet to update all vaccinations, and get a microchip and extra medications. 

Resources to help you plan

Pet-friendly shelter packing list

  • Crate/carrier large enough for your pet to stand up and turn around in 
  • Up-to-date pet records – vaccinations, microchip, county registration 
  • Photo of owner and pet together  
  • Food and water supply for a minimum 7 days, along with bowls  
  • Leash, collar, and muzzle (if needed)  
  • Pet medications, at minimum a 7-day supply  
  • Toys or blankets to put in the kennel 

Large animals

For details on how farmers and ranchers can prepare for a hurricane, see the UF/IFAS Extension website

Last Modified: 6/12/2024, 3:52:25 PM

Was this page helpful?