Q&A with the Animal Shelter: in case of an unexpected emergency, how do I plan for my pet’s care?

Q&A with the Animal Shelter: in case of an unexpected emergency, how do I plan for my pet’s care?



Each month, you will have the chance to have your questions answered by the animal shelter.

What steps can I take now to ensure my pet is cared for if something happens to me like illness or an accident?

Do these things now to help ensure your pet is in the situation you’d want for them if something were to happen to you:

  • Identify at least two people who can provide emergency care for your pet. They should have a key to your home, feeding and care instructions, and the name of your veterinarian.
  • If you have a group of friends with pets, consider pooling information about your animals in a document you all have access to.
  • Get to know your neighbors. At least one neighbor should know how many pets you have and who they can contact regarding them if something happens to you. A neighbor may be the first person to know you were taken away in an ambulance! You can also make a plan with a neighbor to evacuate or care for each other’s animals in a disaster if one of you can’t get home immediately.
  • Place emergency contact information, including your pet’s emergency caretaker’s name and phone number, in your wallet or purse. You should put this same information somewhere in your home where first responders can find it (on the fridge, for example). This is especially important if you live alone.
  • Add ICE-Pets as a contact in your phone (ICE = “In Case of Emergency”).
  • Keep vaccines up to date. In an emergency, your pet may need to go to a home with other animals or temporarily stay at an animal shelter. Plan now to help protect your pet from disease.
  • Include your pet in your estate planning and update your legal documents as animals come and go from your life.

Thank you for planning ahead for the pets who provide you with so much joy and companionship!


For more information on these topics and more, please visit www.WashingtonCountyPets.com or call us at (503) 846-7041. The Bonnie Hays Animal Shelter is located in downtown Hillsboro at 1901 SE 24th Ave. Email your questions to: Stacy_Beckley@co.washington.or.us