Prepping for Pets: An Intro

November 3, 2008

Most of us have at least a rudimentary BOB (Bug Out Bag) or, as I like to call it, a GOODY (Get Out Of Dodge, Yo!) bag for ourselves and other household members. What about our pets?

Regardless of the scenario, you’ll need to make accommodations for your animals, and I’m hammering out a series of posts that will take into consideration the non-human members of your little tribe, focusing primarily on domestic pets rather than livestock.

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, The Humane Society of the United States cited a Zogby International poll that found that 49 percent of adults say they would refuse to evacuate if they couldn’t take their pets with them. Those who did leave their pets behind doomed their animals to exposure and starvation, and in theĀ  emergencies of long durations–such as Katrina–even beloved, gentle dogs can pack up and become dangerous marauders.

Should you have to evacuate your home, how will you handle your pets? Think long and hard about this question, because your decision will have an emotional impact on you and your family, as well as an impact on the well-being of your animals and the community at large.

What about longterm “bugging-in” scenarios? You’re probably already working out a longterm food storage program for yourself, but how will you feed your animals?

Whether your pet is a pocket Chihuahua a-la Paris Hilton (erk) or a working breed, you’ll benefit from the topics currently in the pipeline:

1. Dog Packs: Great for hiking trips as well as buggin’ out, a well-fitting pack will let your dog carry a portion of her share of gear. We’ll discuss proper fit, materials and appropriate suggestions for what your dog can carry, as well as conditioning your pet for short and long packing trips.

2. Small Animal Carriers: Need to haul your kitty cross town? Maybe you’ve got a bird, ferret or pocket pet. We’ll discuss carrier options, as well as accomodations that will make your pet more welcome if you end up couch-surfing, camping or–heaven forbid–in a shelter situation.

3. Long-Term Pet Prepping: We’ll discuss alternatives to the relatively short shelf-life of dry kibble, and the importance of vaccinations and current vet records.

4. Common Emergency Preps: We all have a plan to evacuate pets during an earthquake, fire or other more common emergency, right?

Bookmark this blog, and check in soon for more on these topics. In the meantime, be sure to check out my Amazon store, where you can find emergency food rations for dogs and cats, as well as other useful pet supplies.

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Welcome!

November 2, 2008

Let’s get something clear: I am, by no means, an expert on survival and preparedness. You’ll probably learn stuff here, but most of what I’ll be sharing will be observations on established techniques, ideas and schwag from the perspective of a female. A female who, as a matter of fact, is too cheap to dish for a fake Prada bag, much less a real one, and who wouldn’t want one anyway. Let’s face it; I prefer Hoppe’s Number 9 to Chanel No. 5.

I was inspired to start this blog after reading post after post on forums exalting the virtues of firestarter kits. Kits that include the ubiquitous wad of cotton dabbed in Vaseline. For crying out loud, I kept thinking to myself. Just use some fluff from an OB Regular and a bit of Chapstick! Everyone carries that in their survival kit, don’t they?

Oh, wait…

Truth is–and here’s your very first tidbit of useful information–I’m convinced that OB tampons rate right up there with multitools for Things You Can’t Leave Home Without. With a Swedish FireSteel purchased from the wonderfully darling and brilliant Ron Fontaine of Survivaltopics.com, a rough metal blade, a bit of oil or wax-based beauty product and a nicely shredded (and absorbent!) OB, you can light a fire that would put Texas A&M to shame. Not to mention the nearly 12 inches of string you’ll have on hand for such things as hanging snares, repairing gear or maybe flossing that chunk of cattail tuber out of your teeth.

(Sigh). OK, so I know that any guys reading this might be a bit shy about carrying feminine products around in their gear. It’s not like you’re going to get sudden urges to get the Hello Kitty AR-15. But most of you already know how sanitary pads make great wound dressings right? Well, they do!

OK. So back to the purpose of this little blog. Which is…

  • To add a little bit of female perspective to the somewhat testosterone-sodden subject of survival.
  • To share what I’ve learned in my research and experience with survival and emergency preparedness.
  • To remind my gentle readers and myself that, as serious as the subjects are, life is what’s happening now…keep a sense of humor, keep your attitude positive, and make it fun.

(If some of you guys happen to find this site handy when introducing your better halves to the sport/hobby/obsession of bushcraft/survival/preparedness/tin foil hats, all the better.)