There are more than 358 million pets in the United States, residing in 63 percent of American households. Hurricane Katrina made us all aware of how little planning had gone into assisting animals and people with animals when disasters strike. Since then a great deal has been done to plan for animals and their guardians during a disaster. Much more still needs to be accomplished, including educating the public. This pertains to all animals, not solely companion and service animals. 

The most important accomplishment by FEMA pertaining to animal preparedness is the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act of 2006 (PETS Act).  The PETS Act requires that local and state emergency preparedness authorities include plans for companion and service animals in their disaster plans in order to qualify for grants from FEMA. While interning at FEMA I compiled a list of animal-related projects undertaken by FEMA: http://www.neighborhoodoutlet.com/FEMA.

There are also several animal welfare organizations, such as the Humane Society of the United States, and the ASPCA that are involved in disaster preparedness and rescue for animals.

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