Well, it seems like a simple thing.  If I have time maybe I can throw it in a grocery bag, If not then what, grab your pet and its food and get out or get down to the basement and wait for the event to pass?

The time to think about how you’re going to evacuate should be now.  Before a disaster strikes while you are calm and can really think about what you need to take and how you want to carry it.

The first thing to think about is what disasters are most likely to happen in your area.  If you live on the West Coast, you might be worried about fires, earthquakes maybe flooding or mudslides depending on where you live.  If you live on the East Coast, you might be more concerned with Hurricanes and flooding.  If you live in a higher elevation or you might worry about Ice or snow storms. The center of the country would be Tornado Ally

Once you think about the type of disaster, then it’s time to make your plan on how you are going to evacuate or where you will go if you have to bug in or bug out, like a basement or room in the center of the house with no windows or a Red Cross shelter or hotel.

Bugging out – Think about your escape routes. As for me, I live on a hill and there is only one road.  If there is a fire coming up the hill I might need to evacuate on foot with my pets.

If there is little or no warning like a fire you might need to evacuate quickly.  If you only have a one or two pet household a backpack or roller bag with their supplies might do the trick.  You want to make sure you are keeping your hands free for other items like your laptop.  Let’s look at different options.

Backpack or cinch bags – Again this is great option if you only have one or two pets.  It allows you to keep your hands free to manage other things like your kids or pets.  Try to keep it near your exit door like a closet.  If you are storing pet food or water keep it in a cool dry place.

Roller Bag or Suitcase – Most of us have an extra suitcase or roller bag laying around.  These are great if you have multiple pets or want to store your supplies with your pets supplies for ease of getting out.

Duffle Bags, – These usually only have a single strap and can be a great option if you are bugging in.  If you are looking at a center room in your home like a bathroom it’s easy to store under your sink or in the basement.  If it has a shoulder strap you can use it if you need to bug out as well but can get heavy on one shoulder if you have to carry it for any length of time.

Buckets – This is a perfect and low-cost item if you need to store this in your basement.  It keeps the bugs and critters out.  This is not a good option if you have to bug out because it’s not easy to carry.

Grocery Bags – This is usually never a good option because first, they don’t hold much, and they are lightweight and can fall apart easily.  Cloth grocery bags might be a better option, but without a zipper can fall over easily and your supplies will fall out.

Dog saddle bags – We love this option if you have to hike out on foot.  Let your dog pack a little of his weight.  Remember never to pack more than 20 – 25 pounds of your pet’s body weight into a pack that he has to carry.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money but you should spend some time thinking about how and where you might have to evacuate.  This should guide you to what type of container you might need.

Need a go-bag for your pet? Make sure you check out our full line of premium emergency go-bags for both dogs and cats and our build-your-own custom pak option. Shop

Travel Safe – Prepare today to keep your pet safe tomorrow.


  1. Debbie Leukhardt November 3, 2022 at 5:35 am - Reply

    Great article. Thanks for the tips on how and what to think about planning for escape or evacuation plan with our pets. Sure helps take some of the anxiety out of facing unexpected disaster if you plan ahead. Debbie L

    • Michelle November 6, 2022 at 6:36 am - Reply

      Thanks Debbie for your comments and being prepared!

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