Alberta emergencies have resulted in evacuation of affected municipalities. Displaced families, many requiring emergency shelter or accommodation, are often accompanied by companion animals, while in other cases, companion animals have been left behind.

The ‘ABVMA Report on the Veterinary Profession Response to the Fort McMurray Animal Evacuation’ released in 2018 supported additional planning for companion animal evacuation and care during emergencies. Government of Alberta ministries of Community and Social Services and Municipal Affairs supported the findings of the reports and planning for companion animal response under Provincial Emergency Social Services (PESS).

A multi-agency steering committee and working group was established in October 2018. Collective efforts of PESS and animal welfare organizations have led to the development of a Companion Animal Disaster Response Capability (CADRC) Strategy and Operational Plan.

The Local Authority Emergency Management Regulation (LAEMR) requires emergency management plans to include a “providing emergency social services during an emergency or disaster.” PESS supports local authorities with ESS Planning Guidelines, which includes guidance for development of companion animal emergency care plans.

The CADRC Plan supports municipalities in preparation, planning for and providing care to companion animals during emergencies. CADRC has established resources for training municipalities and augmenting a municipality’s response for animal care including providing direct, regional or if required provincial-level support facilities and personnel including veterinary professionals to provide care for companion animals.

The presentation will provide attendees with understanding of CADRC Plan and how it supports local authorities in preparation, planning and response for companion animal care in emergencies.