Survival Basics

Pet Survival

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Pets are prisoners, overwhelmingly. Sure, they aren’t treated as such, but in practice, they very much are. Most dogs are kept within a locked fence. Many cats are inside cats only and aren’t allowed to roam free. Fish are captive in their tanks, while rodents, birds, and reptiles are kept within cages. This is the way our pets live with us; a disaster, however, changes all of that.

Disasters have a way of “liberating” our pets, as it were, and it’s never a good thing. Whether set loose intentionally, by the death or illness of their owners, or even by damage to their cages or enclosures, many pets are accidentally released during the course of a disaster. The simple fact is that disasters and emergency situations in general create lots of strays, and you definitely want to avoid this. Whether bugging in or bugging out, you need to have a plan to keep your animals securely within your possession. Here’s what you need:


Many dogs are leash dogs, many dogs are create dogs, and believe it or not, many dogs do not fall into either category. Some breeds of dog are strictly indoor dogs, and as such, most owners don’t have a means of securing them. Quite simply, there is no need to walk a miniature breed dog, and between the interior of the home and the backyard, there is no need for further exercise and many owners choose not to secure them.

That’s fine for when the situation remains normal, but as a rule, you should have a collar and a leash for all dogs you own. You never know when you might need to egress your home quickly, and need to take the dogs with you. Also, keep in mind that some dog breeds have larger necks than the diameter of their heads (like Corgis, for example); these breeds will require a harness instead of a collar.

Crates are not a bad idea as well, especially if you want to confine your pet to a very tight space for their own safety. Crates take up lots of room, however, so buy the smallest crate that will comfortably house your dog – they feel more comfortable in small spaces anyways.

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