Emergency Planning Tips for Dog Daycares And Kennels
In the last few years, we have seen numerous natural disasters that have devastated areas of the US. From wildfires and earthquakes to hurricanes and tornadoes, natural disasters can happen anywhere. It pays to make plans regardless of where you are. Whether it’s a fire, flood, or power outage, dog daycares and kennels need to prepare for anything.
Emergency planning prepares you to keep your staff and the pets in your care safe during an emergency. In this article, we’ll explore the following key aspects of a thorough kennel or dog daycare emergency plan:
- Designate a safe emergency location.
- Keep your emergency planning checklist handy.
- Develop your emergency communication plan.
With a well-informed emergency plan in place, you’ll be equipped to react to a crisis quickly and appropriately.
Safe Emergency Location and Transportation
In an emergency, the toughest challenge is moving all pets in your care to a safe place. Even if you have a warning and can contact pet parents to pick up their pets, you will likely have to evacuate pets from your facility. It is costly to evacuate a dog daycare and kennel, even if you are evacuating a small number of pets.
Cover your losses by including an evacuation clause if a pet isn’t picked up In your customer agreement. An evacuation charge should be several hundred dollars or more to cover travel, hotels, food, staff, etc.
Plan how you will transport animals in the case of an emergency. If you do not have access to a van, trailer, or RV, plan by asking your network if you can borrow transportation in case of an emergency.
When deciding where to go, strength is in numbers and the power of community. Contact pet care centers within a two-hour radius to work together in an emergency. Sharing resources and space can save money and create a safer environment for pets and staff.
There are several things you can do in advance to make your evacuation quick:
- Document step-by-step procedures and include them in your disaster preparedness kit.
- Plan to bring veterinary records and pictures for dogs under your care.
- Keep extra collars, harnesses, and leashes in an easy-to-access place.
- Plan how you will secure the building before departure.
Emergency Planning Checklist for Dog Daycares and KennelsA quick, organized departure helps staff stay calm amidst the chaos and move quickly. Keep your checklists with your emergency kit in an easy-to-find place. Below, we’ve included emergency planning checklist templates to make sure you have everything you need.
Pet Evacuation Kit Checklist:
- Pet first-aid kit and guide book
- 3-7 day supply of canned or dry food and water
- Pet feeding dishes and water bowls
- Feeding/medication instructions
- Disposable litter trays
- Litter, scoops, and poop bags
- Collar and harness with ID tag, rabies tag, and leash for every pet
- Plastic trash bags
- Liquid dish soap and disinfectant
- Print or digital copies of pet medical records
- Traveling bag, crate, or carrier for every pet
- Photos of pets (in case you are separated)
Human Evacuation Kit Checklist:
- First-aid kit
- Phone chargers
- Duct tape
- Baby wipes
- Extra clothing and shoes
- Non-perishable food
- Medical and insurance information.
- Staff contact list and critical phone numbers
Emergency Communication PlanningYour emergency plan should include a communication plan for your employees and customers, so everyone knows what’s happening. Include:
- When to communicate with customers and employees
- How to communicate with customers and employees: Will you email them? Call them?
- Designate who is communicating with customers and employees
Pet care business software helps you plan and communicate with staff and customers. With Revelation Pets, you can store all of your customers’ information in one place. The email tool is the perfect place to create messages and templates and have them ready when you need them. Emergency planning could be the difference between life and death for your staff and the pets in your care. Preparation is the best way to ensure a quick and safe experience during any emergency.