Emergency Animal Sheltering

Animal Safety
Online Course
2 hours
University at Albany, SUNY
New York-New Jersey PERLC
Community Preparedness

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Pets are often perceived as family members. During an emergency situation, many people refuse to evacuate their homes if it means leaving their pets behind. This not only puts their own lives at risk, but also the lives of emergency responders involved in rescue efforts. Animal welfare during a disaster came to the forefront of America’s consciousness during Hurricane Katrina. This and other disasters helped drive the development of new legislation concerning pets. The Federal Pets Evacuation and Transportation Act of 2006 (P.E.T.S Act) requires state and local emergency preparedness operational plans to address the needs of individuals with pets or service animals during each phase of the emergency management cycle. Services to be provided include rescue, care, sheltering, and essential assistance to those with animal companions. This course is the second in a series of introductory courses designed for those interested in assisting animals during emergencies. The main purpose of this course is to educate course participants on the purpose and types of emergency animal shelters, as well as the management and administration of such shelters.

Learning Objectives: 
  • Describe the purpose and need for emergency animal sheltering
  • Identify the types of emergency animal shelters and determine which type is suitable for a given disaster situation
  • Recognize the human and physical resources needed to set up and operate an emergency animal shelter
  • Describe the Incident Command System (ICS) and the purpose of using ICS within the shelter organizational structure
  • List potential roles to manage an emergency animal shelter effectively
  • Highlight considerations for some shelter procedures and protocol
  • List useful resources for continued planning and training
PHEP Capabilities: 
Community Preparedness