Protecting your pet during a major

If Tropical Storm Erika, or any storm for that matter, forces evacuations in your area, you want to make sure you take your pets along.Some people may think that shelters aren’t a place for animals, but the City of Jacksonville says four-legged family members are welcome.”We take very serious the threat and I am just trying to make sure me, my family, that includes my dog, is safe,” said Elijah Burke.Now that the First Coast is in Erika’s cone of concern, some locals figure it’s time to start thinking about being prepared.”We have already gone to the stores just in case,” said Burke.It may seem like a no-brainer, but don’t leave your pet behind in the event of an evacuation.”My dog comes with me, she is apart of me, she is family, she is my little girl,” Burke said.”If it is too dangerous for you, it is too dangerous for your pets,” said Amy Pierce with the Jacksonville Humane Society.Pierce says the city has several pet-friendly shelters.”Jacksonville does have animal friendly shelters and just before those shelters open, they announce which ones will be animal friendly,” said Pierce.Pierce says once a shelter is announced, you need to call ahead and let them know that you are bringing a pet.She also says you must provide proof that your pet is up to date on its shots.”We recommend that you have three days of water and food, of course their shot record, but there are some hotels that will let you bring pets as well,” said Burke.

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