Thanks to linwhite for this great reminder and information.
Does your family have a disaster plan? Do you have a plan for what to do with or for your pets? Do you have the supplies and equipment needed to do it? This is a subject near and dear to my heart since part of my job is Disaster Response for the State of Florida. My unit works with sheltering and feeding people. Luckily, Florida has a State unit that deals with Animal Issues. The Federal Government does not. Most other states do not. We've learned we need one because we get so much practice responding. We worry more about hurricanes than anything else but regardless of what the kind of disasters pop up in your neck of the woods, you need a plan.
Since most bullys can't swim, you can't plan on leaving them home in an area that may get water logged - ever wonder why they found so few bullys needing rescue after Katrina when they found so many other kinds of dogs?
Planning on taking your pet to a shelter with you - not smart - although it is slowly changing, most shelters don't allow pets and don't have a co-located pet shelter. If they do, you may be expected to supply your own crate, food and everything else. Check with your local Red Cross and your State and County Emergency Response Teams to learn what's going on in your neck of the woods.
We all know hotels and motels that allow pets are in short supply generally. If they are over run with folks fleeing a disaster they will be less likely to accept your big old dog.
When you plan your water supplies for 72 hours after the disaster when help can arrive, make sure you include enough water for your animals as well as your people.
Make sure you have enough food for them to last several weeks or until the stores reopen. Dog food is not something most feeding operations have unless it's been donated. There's enough difficulty scraping up funding for people food.
When making a list of medications you'll need to have a supply of, don't forget about what your pets need. Make sure you have a way to get more quickly - ahead of time if possible - after the event if not. Remember if you are affected your normal chains of supply probably are as well. They won't necessarily be able to meet your needs if they are survivors too.
If you live in a hot area and the power goes out how are you going to help keep your bully cool? They may or may not be handing out ice, an item that seems to be much less readily available than it was several years ago. Do you know where you can get dry ice?
Do you know which stores in your areas have generators or generator hook ups so they will come back on line faster?
Remember, if there's no power there will be no way to get gas since the pumps won't work. If a station has a power source you better believe Emergency Response vehicles will have first dibs on the fuel.
Google your state and county's Emergency Response unit. The Red Cross and Salvation Army have pages as well. All are good resources with check lists and lots of information. Remember - it only takes one event to mess up your world - the one that comes your way. The rest don't matter on a personal level.
Here is an overall Pet Disaster Plan site - http://www.petdisasterplan.com/
Here are examples of Florida's Emergency Site; your state may have it's own. When looking at other state's pages some are really good and some, not so much.
This page has links to all kinds of planning info including stuff for teachers: http://www.floridadisaster.org/DEMpublic.asp
If you want to make a Disaster Plan online - http://www.floridadisaster.org/family/
Want information on Pet Plans - lots of links and detailed info here - http://www.floridadisaster.org/petplan.htm
If you evacuate, have a place to go and take your pets, use Pet's Welcome to find pet friendly hotels and motels by state and city listings.
Here's your Disaster Supply Kit list including pet tips: http://www.floridadisaster.org/supplykit.htm
This should get you started. If you're interested in this kind of stuff feel free to follow the links. If you're interested in getting involved contact your local Red Cross. They can tell you who to contact in your local area to get involved with a DART team to work with animals if you choose.
May the worst disaster any of us has to deal with be a pot boiling over on the stove.