Shakes and Quakes: How to Prepare Your Pets for Their Next Earthquake

If you live in California, chances are you’ve recently experienced the bellowing rumbles of the ground shaking and your dining room chandelier swaying from side to side. If you have, then you’d also know that when you feel the earth shake, it seems to last a lifetime. Perhaps this is what our pets feel as they sense, and possibly hear, the ground shaking below us. Here at CCLA, we experienced a variety of emotions from our pups during the earthquakes on July 4th and 5th. Some dogs slept through the bellows while others paced, panted, and drooled. So, how can we protect our pets from getting hurt, feeling anxious, and possibly fleeing? Below, we’ll give you some helpful tips on how to prepare you and your four-legged kiddos for any future quakes!


It’s always important to have a game plan whenever disaster strikes, and unfortunately, Mother Nature is not so forgiving. If you don’t have an emergency plan for your pets; pet owners, family members, and emergency responders may be at risk when faced with the impulsive decision to risk their lives for furry friends. That’s why being prepared is always key.


Collars and Tags – Make sure all information is updated and accurate. Therefore, if your pets flee, anyone who finds them can contact you.

Microchips – Implanting a microchip can increase the rate of finding your pets by a whopping 50%! To learn why Microchips are so important, check out our blog here.

Leashes, collars, and carriers – Keep these items near entrances and exits of your home.

Hiding Spaces – familiarize yourself with your pet’s favorite hiding spots whenever they’re in distress. Chances are, if you can’t find your pet after an earthquake, they may be seeking shelter where they have felt comforted in the past.

Rescue Alert Stickers – If you’re living in California or anywhere else where Natural Disaster’s may be prone to occur, it’s important to hang signs on doors and windows, letting first responders know there is a pet inside your home. This will allow you to keep you and your family safe, while remaining out of harms way.

Close off small spaces – When animals are afraid they like to hide. Cats especially have a unique way of getting into those tight, cramped spaces. Keep in mind that this could be dangerous as things can shift or fall. You don’t want your cat to become trapped.

Supplies you should have:

Food and water/water bowls: it’s best to have enough food and water for your pet to comfortably last about two weeks. And remember, this doesn’t just go for pets, this important for you pet owners as well! Waterproof containers for carrying foods and water are best.

Pet Carriers and toys: pet carriers make transporting your furry kiddos safe and comfortable for you-and them. In instances of earthquakes, it may be best to have hard exterior pet carriers to help protect them from any falling objects.

Poop bags and cleaning supplies: paper towels, disinfectant, rubber gloves, etc. All these items will come in handy eventually!

Medications: don’t forget their flea and tick meds as well!

Vet documents: you never know when you might yourselves in a medical emergency. Therefore, it’s always best to have your pets documents with you.

First Aid Kit – learn more about this in our blog, “First Time for First Aid

What to do:

Drop, Cover, Hold – As soon as you feel (or hear) the earth begin to shake, drop to the ground and crawl to a place of shelter. If you are outside, crawl to an open space where no houses or trees can fall on you. Hold on to your pet’s leash but remember, if they escape, don’t run after them. This is why tags, microchips, and knowing your pet’s hiding spots is very important.

Wait out the earthquake and keep monitoring for after shocks – If the earthquake lingers for a while or aftershocks quickly follow, it may be hard for you to hold on to your pet’s leash for an extended period of time. This is where pet carriers can come in handy as your pet can be safely confined and easily transported. Also keep in mind that when the rumblings stop, pets still may want to flee.

Protect their bodies –Make sure that your pet’s head and neck are covered from anything that may fall, even if your pets are in carriers.

Ever experience what it’s like to save your pets from a natural disaster? Have more ideas about how to prevent pets from running away? Comment below, we’d love to hear from you!

More Helpful Sources:


Los Angeles times

American Kennel Club

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