Pet management and emergencies

Be prepared 

-Include your animals in your household Personal Emergency Plan.

-Properly identify your pets.

-Your dogs and cats must be microchipped.

-Ensure your pet’s collar carries your contact details.

-Include some pet food and medications for a couple of days in your emergency kit.

-Have a strong, secure pet carrier box/cage handy. It should be large enough to allow your pet to be comfortable for a couple of days and be clearly marked with your name and contact details.

-Be aware that some evacuation centres may not accept animals so plan alternatives accordingly. 

Further details for pet management during emergencies


If you are directed to evacuate, take your pet with you. Do not leave animals unattended or in a motor vehicle during an emergency. Discuss arrangements with your neighbours and have an agreement about the management of pets should an emergency occur. Make a plan for where you will house your pets should you have to leave your home.


  • If moving livestock to a safer place, do so early to avoid unnecessary risk.
  • Before bushfires, prepare and maintain fuel reduced areas onto which stock can be moved and held.
  • Before floods, ensure that there is high ground nearby and organise feed supplies for the duration of the flood.
  • Feed – have emergency supplies of fodder as part of risk management preparedness.

Handling difficult animals

  • Cats – a difficult cat can be handled by holding the scruff of its neck and placing it in a carry box.
  • Dogs – use a muzzle as a restraint. If a muzzle is unavailable, tear up a bed sheet and place around the muzzle of the dog, crossing under the neck and around the back of its ears and secure. Use only as a short term measure.
  • Horses – place a blindfold (e.g. a towel) across the head and lead from the left side with your hand and elbow close to the horse.