TV Personality Sean Lowe Stars in Public Service Announcement Urging Families to Include Pets in Disaster Planning
As Hurricane Season Begins, the Banfield Foundation® Shares Importance of Disaster Preparedness with Pet Owners and Raises Money for Pets in Need
VANCOUVER, WASH.— June 6, 2018 — Last year, thousands of families were left devastated by the destruction of Hurricanes Harvey, Maria and Irma — and many suffered the added heartbreak of being separated from their pets. Timed with the start of hurricane season, the Banfield Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving pets and the people who love them, has partnered with TV personality and Hurricane Harvey responder, Sean Lowe, on a public service announcement (PSA) to help pet owners prepare for the unexpected.
“Last year, I experienced firsthand the devastation and despair Hurricane Harvey caused for many of my fellow Texans. While on the ground, I saw people clinging to their pets during rescues – and heard stories of far too many helpless pets stranded or displaced amidst the chaos,” Lowe said. “I can’t imagine my life without my dog Ellie, so I’m honored to partner with the Banfield Foundation to educate pet owners on the simple yet potentially life-saving steps they can take for their four-legged family members before disaster strikes.”
The #BanfieldFoundation partners with @SeanLowe in new PSA about the importance of pet #disasterpreparedness. @Banfield Tweet
Despite last year’s catastrophic hurricane season, a 2018 survey conducted by Banfield Pet Hospital® revealed a staggering 91 percent of pet owners are not prepared for the next disaster. To combat this reality, the Banfield Foundation’s PSA highlights steps pet owners can take now to limit challenges and stress in the event of a future emergency:
- Create a pet disaster preparedness kit in partnership with your veterinarian that includes basic survival needs, including up to seven days’ worth of food and water, two weeks’ worth of medications, important documents like medical and vaccination records, microchip information, and a photo of you with your pet in case of separation.
- In the event of a natural disaster, never leave your pets behind—in vehicles, tethered or crated without you or a member of your family. To help avoid having to make such a difficult choice, identify and create a list of places to evacuate with your pets in preparation, such as pet-friendly hotels or boarding facilities, and include contact information and addresses for each. Also include contact information for your veterinarian, as well as emergency veterinarians in nearby cities, in your kit.
- Ensure your pets are microchipped. Banfield also found more than half of those surveyed do not have their pet microchipped. Microchipping is one of the best ways to ensure pets are returned to their owners if they get lost or separated. In addition to ensuring your pet is always wearing up-to-date identification tags, talk with your veterinarian about microchipping your pets and ensure your account and contact information is kept current to increase the likelihood of a reunion if your pet gets lost.
“Sean touched the lives of so many affected by Hurricane Harvey — his courage paired with his passion for pets made him the perfect partner to lend his voice to the Banfield Foundation’s PSA on pet disaster preparedness,” said Kim Van Syoc, Executive Director of the Banfield Foundation. “Natural disasters can strike anywhere or anytime, but preparation can make a big difference in helping keep families safe — and that includes your pets. We hope this PSA inspires pet owners everywhere to make disaster planning a priority this hurricane season.”
Get a Kit, Gift a Kit to a Pet in Need
Now through September 30, pet owners can kick-start their own pet disaster preparedness plans and make a difference in the lives of pets in need. With a donation of $45 or more at BanfieldFoundation.org/disaster, the Banfield Foundation will thank donors with a pre-assembled pet disaster preparedness kit and donate 1,000 kits to pet owners in need in Houston, New Orleans and Baton Rouge—areas hit hardest by recent disasters. Kits include a waterproof bag containing critical supplies, such as a blanket, treats, stress-relief products, water and food calculation charts, tips and checklists to help keep pets cared for in the event of a natural disaster.
All donations support the Banfield Foundation’s Disaster Relief Grant program, which aids animal welfare organizations and other nonprofits in local communities impacted by natural disasters. In 2017 alone, the Banfield Foundation and Banfield Pet Hospital helped more than 26,000 pets in hard-hit areas like Texas, Florida, California and Puerto Rico.
For more tips on disaster preparedness or to donate to the Banfield Foundation, visit BanfieldFoundation.org/disaster.
About Banfield Pet Hospital®
Founded in Portland, Ore., in 1955, Banfield is the largest general-veterinary practice in the world. In 2007, Banfield joined the Mars, Inc. family of businesses, and today has more than 1,000 hospitals across the United States and Puerto Rico. More than 3,500 Banfield veterinarians are committed to providing high-quality veterinary care for over three million pets annually. In 2017, Banfield Pet Hospital – including the work of the Banfield Foundation – was named among Points of Light's 'Civic 50' as one of the most community-minded companies in the U.S. Press seeking additional information are invited to call the Media Hotline: (888) 355-0595.
About the Banfield Foundation®
At the core of the Banfield Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is the belief that all pets deserve access to veterinary care. In support of this belief, the foundation funds programs that enable veterinary care, elevate the power of the human-animal bond, provide disaster relief for pets, and advance the science of veterinary medicine through fostering innovation and education. It also leverages the expertise and passion of Banfield Pet Hospital associates to care for pets in need. At the Banfield Foundation, we are committed to making a better world for pets because they make a better world for us. For more information, visit BanfieldFoundation.org, and follow @BanfieldFoundation on Instagram and Facebook.
Banfield Pet Hospital & the Banfield Foundation