Why Prepare and How to Survive

Why We Should Prepare

A week after Super Storm Sandy hit the east coast of the United States news updates reported very little help arriving from outside sources.
Since then several hurricanes have devastated the Florida Keys and Bahama islands.
Government aid, Red Cross supplies, food, shelter, medical and rescue workers could not reach the victims.

They, the emergency response resources, were cut off from access to victims due to blocked or washed away roadways and downed communications. Emergency response teams had to clear a path in to damaged areas or you if you had been there, which takes time.
Outside resources could not get in to help for days and weeks in some areas.
Additionally, local emergency response teams were on the inside, on site assisting and doing what they could but the damages and the vast number of storm survivors and injuries was overwhelming leaving many people to fend for themselves.
The beaches along the shoreline were completely wiped-out with many homes gone.
Entire homes and businesses totally destroyed with everything the survivors owned.
People were wearing donated clothing because they could not find their own clothes or their own house with any belongings in the debris.

They had nothing.

People wandered the streets wondering what to do.

On television they asked the reporters,

“When would help arrive?” and “What do we do?”

No one knew the answer, other than to say, “Help was on the way.”

Super storms and earthquake plus tsunami like that which hit Japan raise the need for preparing for disasters everywhere.

You do not want to be left wandering the streets wondering what to do and worrying about where your loved ones are, do you?

How to Survive a Disaster

Teach your pet dog to carry supplies in the "How-to evacuate with Pets - Dog Bug-out Bag " course.

The few minutes required to pack a survival backpack on your dog before going for drive can save a life because you will have lifesaving necessities with you in the event of an accident or disaster.

Disasters come in big and small, from a one person car accident to a city wide incident. What has been proven over and over again is the more prepared a person is the greater their chances of survival during emergencies and tragedies.

What is nice about training your dog to be a Family Disaster Dog is that this type of dog training only takes a few hours of training or preparation each month.

Each lesson gives you or your family a greater chance for survival and some family fun with peace of mind in knowing you are ready.

Additionally, you don't have to do this alone. You can prepare by forming groups in your neighborhood or in your club and circles of friends. Online social networks and schools are good places to find others who would be interested in learning with you how to prepare for disasters with your dogs.
The group can meet once a month to train with their dogs and family. Remember every skill you and your dog learn is one more step towards survival. One skill is better than none.

The next course is about the Family Disaster K9 Bag and Bug-out List for families with pets. Including what supplies to pack for each person and pet in the household. Also, packing the bag and training dogs to carry.

Main Points to Consider when preparing

1.The most important thing you can do to be prepared is to pack a 72 hour Survival Go-Bag, which is also called a Bug-out Bag by the military and by FEMA a Ready Pack or in a dog's case; a Family Disaster Dog Backpack. (Take the course How-to Evacuate with your Pets-Dog Bug-out List")

2. Keep these backpacks near the exit to your home, the office and one in the car. It's best to be in the habit of taking a go-bag with you each time you leave. Many people in earthquake zones carry a go-bag everywhere, similar to an over sized purse or book bag.

3. Also, share the information about Family Disaster Dogs with your friends, family and community. In the aftermath of a disaster, communities come together to survive and if each person knew one lesson from this course everyone could benefit. Form a community group and train your dogs together.

4. Additionally you should learn how to shelter-in-place and how to evacuate or bug out to a safe location by reading this course and other preparedness information then practicing often.

5. Shelter-in-place means you stay in one place, preferably the home where you have hopefully prepared for disasters by learning more about food storage and stock a pantry with at least two week's supply of food that can be eaten without cooking. Make sure you can easily open the packages. Include medical supplies, personal hygiene and first aid kits. Learn CPR and take first aid classes.

6. Keep in mind when you are stocking up food and supplies that the more supplies you have the longer you will be self-sufficient and able to provide for yourself without aid from outside resources. Sheltering in place gives your family a cushion to sit on and wait while your town or city returns to normal after the disaster.

7. Be sure to store extra water for drinking, cleaning and cooking. Make sure you have a way to purify the water before cooking or drinking.

8. Be sure to store the survival food and supplies in an easy to reach location.

9. If your home is in an area where it can be harmed it is best to find a spot out of the house but on the property or nearby to use as a hiding spot that you can reach if your home is damaged or you must evacuate quickly.

10. The place can be used as a meeting spot for family and friends to regroup at or as a base camp to shelter in place at with supplies you would carry out of your house in the 72 hour backpacks.

11. It is a good idea to set up the meeting spot before a situation occurs. Any safe secure and private location a short walk from home can work as a meet up spot for your family and dogs who we will teach to go there and find you.

12. If you live where you can plan a base camp or bug-out location and store supplies at the camp then prepare the camp beforehand by stocking it with supplies. This is where your family will meet if you are separated and without a home. Your dog can learn to find people and bring them to the meeting spot.

13. If you live in the city, you can find a clean comfortable spot in a city park or private area near your home beforehand and use a paper map to discuss it with your family or group. The more private the location, the safer it is.

14. The location should be large enough to house the people in your group. This public location will not be stocked up with supplies. The supplies should be stored in easy to carry packs with each member of the group or family so they can bring the extra survival gear to the base camp when they evacuate.

15. Show everyone the meeting location and explain you will meet there in an emergency. At the time of evacuation, every person will bring supplies and set-up camp using what they can carry with their dog's help as outlined in the following pages.

16. Your group should stay at this location until outside aid from the police, fire department and rescue teams arrives. In most disasters you will be cut off from outside aid for hours to days.

17. Be prepared to be out of electric, heat and water for many days by learning how to use alternative energy methods for cooking and heating. Make sure the methods are safe for indoor use. Teaching your dog how to bring you “the stick” as a fun game could one day come in handy if you ever need to build a fire, your dog can fetch firewood.

18. Teach your pets and children what to do if they are separated from you. They should learn how to go to the meeting place on their own, how to stay warm and how to remain in one spot when people are looking for them.

19. The more your family learns the more they know what to do, dogs too :)

Pictured are my elderly dogs Willie and Daisy ready to evacuate with bug-out bags!

Listen to the audio interview of the local radio show interviewing Family Disaster Dogs


After listening to the radio interview and reading this course

Make a list of what you and your dog would like to learn from the information you learned.

Some dogs are better able to perform one task than other dogs. Like us each dog is an individual and this type of dog training takes this fact into account. As you learn about what dogs are capable of doing for us then you can choose what best suits your own family's situation and your dog.

One dog in the family might be big and strong who can carry more supplies while the tiny toy dog in the family might be best taught to look for you in rubble if a building fell in after an earthquake or act as a messenger dog to go between two people who are hurt.

Both size dogs can learn valuable lessons here which are suited for them.

Make a list for each dog in the family to learn different skills then you have more skills to count on.

Refer to your list during future training and planning.