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Pet Preparedness

Hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30. Whatever plans you make for yourself, remember to include your pets. If you're riding out the storm in the home of a family member, friend or neighbor, take your pets with you.

If you stay at home, remember to stay together. Keep your pet in a crate or carrier and find a safe area where you will all be together. Keep their collar and tag on in case you get separated. It's always best to microchip your pets since they tend to lose their collars.

We encourage pet owners residing in an evacuation zone, unsafe structure or trailer to come to a pet-friendly evacuation center.

Animal Supplies Checklist

Before disaster strikes, pet owners are encouraged to review the Animal Supplies Checklist to learn how to prepare pets before, during and after a disaster.

Stray Animals After a Storm

Wild or stray domestic animals can pose a danger during or after the passage of a hurricane. Do not corner a disoriented or displaced animal. If an animal must be removed contact your local animal control authorities.

If you are bitten by any animal, seek immediate medical attention. If you are bitten by a snake try to accurately identify the type of snake so that if poisonous the correct anti-venom can be administered. Do not cut the wound or attempt to suck the venom out.

Certain animals may carry rabies. Although the virus is rare care should be taken to avoid contact with stray animals and rodents. Health departments can provide information on the types of animals that carry rabies in your area.

Pet-Friendly Evacuation Centers

We encourage pet owners residing in qualified evacuation zones, unsafe structures or trailers to come to one of the pet-friendly evacuation centers.

Pet-friendly evacuation centers accept more than just cats and dogs. They also accept birds, ferrets, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, rats and rabbits (small-sized, under 10 pounds, such as California or Dutch breeds).

Evacuation centers will be announced as needed. Learn more about Evacuations.
  • What You Must Bring

    • Provide proof of residency within an evacuation zone.
    • Present medical and current vaccination records for each pet. Annual rabies vaccinations and a visible Miami-Dade County dog license are required by Miami-Dade County. Strict enforcement concerning these violations is essential to ensure a rabies-free community. Cats are also required to have annual rabies vaccinations.
    • Pet owners must bring supplies for themselves and their pet.
    • Limit four pets per household.
    • At least one family member must remain in the evacuation center with the pet.
    The Pet Adoption and Protection Center will be crowded due to displaced animals immediately after a storm, and it is not possible to kennel pets prior to an emergency event. We do not board animals during emergencies.
  • While at the Evacuation Center

    Pet owners must be prepared to care and maintain control over their pets at all time.

    In order to avoid injury to response personnel or the public, owners are required to:
    • Maintain their pets in a crate, on a leash or otherwise controlled
    • Muzzle aggressive or anxious pets
    Pet owners should also be aware of the following circumstances:

    • Should there be a need to monitor pets for contamination, owners must maintain control of the pet and follow the directions of the responders providing the emergency services.
    • Should there be a need to wash contaminants from pets, owners shall be expected to conduct the wash down under the direction of emergency responders.
    • Pets that become a threat to responders or the public will be placed under the control of an animal control officer.