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Hurricane safety for your dogs and cats

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Whether it was with Hurricane Harvey or Irma, we've been hearing a lot about lost animals having to be rescued because of the storm but how can you keep your pets safe during this season?

Pets INC has taken in dozens of rescue dogs and cats from the coast since Friday and the West Columbia based rescue says the most common scenario seen involves an owner losing his or her pet when they're trying to evacuate and the two get separated.

The now full rescue stresses the importance of having a plan especially during an evacuation because it's not as simple as just taking your pet, putting them in your car and driving off.

"Have a carrier for your pet like a Pet Taxi and make sure you can get your pet into the carrier in a timely manner so it's a good idea to practice that. Lure them in with treats and however you got to do it," says Kathy Calhoun.

"Most importantly, you want to make sure that you're stocking up on food for pets. You know people go to the store. They get bread. They get water. They get milk. They get all types of canned goods for themselves, but a lot of times they forget about their dog or cat. Make sure you have food. You have bottled water. Make sure you have a back stock of any medications that you're cat or dog may need. Just make sure you have at least a couple weeks work of supplies for them as well," adds the Pets INC Adoptions Manager.

"If you're going to stay at home with your pet which you should only do it they're saying it's okay to do, bring your pet inside whether it's a cat or dog and even if they're used to being outside. You don't want them to be outside. Bring them in. They're probably going to be scared during the storm. There's a lot of debris that will be flying around and heavy rains so you want to make sure you're keeping track of your pet. You want to block off any type of hiding places like any nooks or crannies - anything that they can hide under or behind. If you're pet is very frightened, it's a good idea to put your pet in a carrier or a crate and keep the pet near you. There are some calming solutions that you can apply like ointments. There's things like Rescue Remedy and Thunder Shirts that you can put on your dog that kind of hugs your dog to help them feel safe. There's also diffusers that you can plug in that have calming agents," she adds

Calhoun also says that many people will come to the rescue in search of their missing pets following a storm but unfortunately not many of them are reunited.

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