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COVID-19 and Your Pets!

Updated: May 15, 2023

No one wants to think of a worst-case scenario, but we are living through an unusual time, and you will feel more at ease if you have a plan for your pets. Should you be hospitalized or become too ill to care for them, you don’t have to worry, because you already have a plan to set in motion!

  1. Identify someone who can help. Reach out now to your neighbors, friends, coworkers, or family members who could temporarily take them in. Many boarding facilities remain open and also may be able to provide care. Talk to the persons in advance, so they’re prepared in case they’re called to action.

  2. Prepare a kit for your pets:

    • Include name and contact information for the person who can care for your pets

    • Name and contact information for a back-up, in case your first choice in unable to help

    • Instructions with anything the person needs to know

    • Food and treats for up to two weks.

    • Leash and harness if applicable

    • Crate or carrier for transport

    • Toys, a bed, and a blanket – things that smell like home will provide comfort if your pet needs to stay with someone else

    • Vaccination records

    • Contact information for your veterinarian

    • Any medications with instructions

    • Check that the microchip information is up-to-date

3. Have a card in your wallet, purse, or similar with your pets' names, information, and contact information for the person who can care for them, should something happen to you.

If you are not ill with COVID-19, you can interact with your animals as you normally would. Feed them, cuddle with them, and care for them like you always do. It’s always a good idea to practice good hygiene – wash your hands, make sure bowls, beds, and any other supplies are clean, and so on.

If you are ill with COVID-19 you should restrict contact with pets and other animals, just as you would restrict your contact with other people.

When possible, have another member of your household or business take care of feeding and otherwise caring for any animals, including pets. If you have a service animal or you must care for your pets, wear a cloth facemask. Don’t share food, kiss, or hug them. Wash your hands before and after any contact with them.

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