Keeping Your Cat Safe During Severe Storm Season
Even though it was a long and cold winter, one of the bad things about spring and summer is the threat of severe storms. Today was the first day we were under a tornado watch and severe thunderstorm warning. After checking the storm tracker on the news, I went out into the sun room to find Annie, Eddie and Mercy.
Eddie was relaxing in the heated thinking circle, Mercy was curled up on a chair and Annie was tucked inside the Pei Pod. Although the pink egg might allow Annie to feel protected, it is up to us to create a storm safe area for all of us to seek shelter during severe weather.
Thunder is Rumbling. Do You Know Where Your Cat Is Hiding?
Cats can be difficult to find when they are scared. Find out your cat’s favorite hiding places before a severe storm arrives. Gracey was terrified of storms, so we would pick her up prior to the arrival of a severe storm, whenever possible, and close her in our master bedroom or bathroom. This allowed us to quickly place her into her carrier and go to the basement storm-safe room.
Eddie and Mercy are just as afraid of storms as Gracey was and they often head straight to the basement anyway, but to be sure we can get them into their carriers, we have begun to place them in a smaller area ahead of the storms. Annie has no fear. I am still trying to decide if this is good or bad.
Getting your cats tucked safely and securely inside their carriers prior to the worst of the storm is key. They will be safe and you can quickly get everyone to the safe-room ahead of the storm.
Tips for Creating a Storm-Safe Room for your Cats
Choose a room that is cat friendly and safe. A frightened cat will run and hide, so make sure that the room or area that you choose is cat safe.
- Close off any small openings where your cat might squeeze in to hide.
- Make sure there are no toxic products (cleaners, pesticides, etc) or sharp objects, such as tools stored in the safe room.
Keep emergency cat supplies in the storm-safe room. While you can always add other items, make sure you start with the essentials.
- Cat food, water and treats. Stock enough for at least 5-7 days. One gallon of water per person per day at a minimum A couple of extra gallons in case won’t hurt either.
- Any medications or special treatments your cat will need.
- Litter box, litter, scoop and garbage bags for waste.
- Cat carrier large enough for your cat to stand, turn around, and sleep comfortably. Annie and Eddie share a larger carrier and Mercy has his own carrier.
- A crate is also a good option to keep your cats secure and safe with more room to move around if they will be confined for a longer period of time. We have a crate large enough for all three cats including a litter box.
- A large bag that you can transport the emergency supplies in case of evacuation. You might consider a grab-and-go emergency kit that you can take to your car.
Additional cat comfort items for the storm-safe room. In addition to the essentials, you might consider keeping a few other items in the storm-safe room for your cat’s comfort. These items might include but are not limited to:
- Comfortable cat beds and blankets
- Favorite toys
- Feliway or other cat calming aid. Thundershirt and Thunderspray are options if your cat is terrified of storms like our Gracey was.
In Case of Evacuation, Take Your Cats With You.
If the storm damages your home and you are told to evacuate, take your cats and their emergency supplies with you. Remember, you might not be able to go back to get your cats so just pack them up and take them with you.
Holy Cat! Is that Hail?
While I was writing this post, we were under a severe storm warning that included a tornado watch. Even though the storm was expected to travel north east of our home, we were hammered by hail and strong winds. The sound was deafening. When the pounding finally ended the ground was covered in hail pellets.
After the storm passed we came out of our storm-safe room and checked the house for any damage. We were lucky. No downed tree limbs or damage. An eerie fog created by the melting hail began to thicken and cover the ground.
We let the cats out to roam about the house and settle back into their routine. After a quick patrol of the house, all three cats were ready to settle down and relax. Eddie decided he would opt for the inside of the Pei Pod as it provides just a little more protection.
This weekend Paul and I plan to clean up our storm-safe room. Although we had supplies for the cats, we didn’t have much for us. We also need to add a first aid kit for both us and the cats.
How about you? Do you have a storm-safe room?