Area shelters urge pet owners to make plans in wake of COVID-19 crisis

Area shelters urge pet owners to make plans in wake of COVID-19 crisis
An increasing amount of animals are being affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. (Source: WFIE)

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Pima Animal Care Center, The Humane Society of Southern Arizona, and The Hermitage No-Kill Cat Shelter and Sanctuary are asking pet owners to have a plan in place for their pets in the wake of COVID-19. They’re asking pet owners to do the following:

Find a temporary caregiver in case you are hospitalized.

The best place for your pet is in their home, but if you become too ill to care for your pet, make sure there is a friend or family member who can take your pet into their home. It would be best if the pet knows that person and likes that person, however, most any home is better than the stressful environment of a shelter. You can also contact pet-sitters and boarding facilities. Many boarding facilities have availability because people are not traveling and do not need to utilize boarding services.

Put together an “emergency supply kit. This should include:

  • Name and contact information for the person who can care for your pets
  • Name and contact information for your back-up in case your go-to is no longer able to help
  • Food, treats, a leash, toys and any other supplies necessary to care for your pet for at least two weeks
  • A crate or carrier to transport your pet
  • Vaccination records
  • Collar with ID tags (don’t forget to make sure their microchip information is up to date)
  • Medications and prescriptions, along with instructions
  • Daily care instructions
  • Your veterinarian's contact information
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization, there is currently no evidence that people can get COVID-19 from pets. The best place for your pet is in the home they know and love. If you aren’t feeling well but are still able to provide care for your pet, please keep them at home where they feel most comfortable.

There are several ways you can help our local shelters. Ensure that our shelters have critical supplies for fostering, overflow vet care, and community support like emergency boarding for owned pets by making a secure monetary gift to The Humane Society of Southern Arizona, Friends of Pima Animal Care Center, and The Hermitage No-Kill Cat Shelter and Sanctuary.

For information about local impacts of coronavirus on humans and guidance for keeping yourself and others healthy, please follow the dedicated page on the Pima County Health Department website: www.pima.gov/covid19.

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