The thing about emergencies is that, by definition, they’re unexpected. Nobody starts their day thinking disaster is about to strike—but that’s just what we, as animal lovers and caregivers, need to do in order to ensure we’re prepared to continue providing our pets with the essentials of food, water and shelter in the event of an emergency.
At San Diego Humane Society, we are responsible for the care of more than 1,500 animals in our shelters on any given day. That’s why it’s critical that we have a disaster plan in place—just as it’s critical that every family have a plan that takes into consideration not only the human family members, but the four-legged, furred and feathered ones as well. It’s easier than you might think. Remember: You can always take your animals with you. There are animal welfare resources—like our organization and our partners in emergency preparedness, the County of San Diego Department of Animal Services and the Red Cross—available to assist you and your pets in times of crisis.
This issue’s cover story is filled with useful information on putting together your own emergency preparedness plan. We may not like to think about it, but here in San Diego we’re especially vulnerable to natural disasters like wildfires and earthquakes. For the sake of our families and the furry loved ones who depend on us for protection, we need to expect the unexpected.
Gary Weitzman, DVM, MPH, CAWA
President and CEO
San Diego Humane Society