Animals in Disasters
Animals play many important roles in our lives, including providing companionship, service, and food. Disasters, both natural and human-induced, can negatively affect animals just as much as people. In Texas, the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) has been tasked by the Texas Division of Emergency Management with developing a planning and response system to address livestock and companion animal needs during emergencies. The TAHC works with local, state, federal, non-governmental, and sector partners to help plan for, respond to, and recover from natural disasters that affect livestock and companion and service animals. At the federal level, the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards (PETS) Act was signed into law on October 6, 2006. This law requires state and local disaster plans to include provisions for household pets and service animals in the event of a major disaster or another emergency.
Refer to the following links for additional information on emergency preparedness in Texas and emergency preparedness information pertaining to animals.
- Texas Animal Health Commission Disaster Resources
- Texas A&M Veterinary Emergency Team
- Texas Division of Emergency Management
- Ready.gov: Prepare Your Pets for Disasters
- United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Pet Safety in Emergencies
- United States Department of Agriculture – Protecting Livestock During a Disaster