Posted by: Green Knight | September 12, 2012

Cats in Disasters

My pal Ingrid King writes a cool blog called “The Conscious Cat,” which is fun and informative. Since I wrote one on cat rescues recently, and one on Disaster Preparedness Month last outing, I thought I’d pass along a link to her post from yesterday, on emergency preparedness for your cats. Check it out at:

She discusses some dos and don’ts that are pretty useful, from a recent storm she and her kitty tribe experienced. Many of the tips are transferable to dogs as well. You can also “like” her site’s Facebook page, and consider ordering her book “Buckley’s Story.”

Ingrid mentioned a couple of products I hadn’t heard of, Storm Soother and Stress Stopper. One thing I’ve used is Feliway, which is a room spray, but also available as a plugin air-freshener thingie, that calms kitties and cuts down on screeching and hissing when introducing a new member to your tribe. It seemed to work for my bunch. Some readers may have heard of the “Thundershirt,” which is sort of a doggie sweater that somehow calms dogs that are afraid of loud noises (thunderstorms, fireworks, etc.). I have a couple of friends that swear by them, and I recently found out that they now have them for cats as well! (Ingrid, are you listening?)

It seems to be true that many animals can sense impending disasters, by sensing changes in air pressure or vibrations that are too faint for us to notice (think earthquakes). But I’ll never forget the time back home in San Francisco when we had a moderate 6.6 temblor. Those old wooden Victorians tend to rattle a bit anyway, so if the house started to shake, we jaded SF natives would think, “is that a bus going by, or is it a quake starting?” When the shaking kept on and got stronger, we’d decide, “yeah, it’s a quake,” grab our old Civil Defense helmet or hardhat and our beer and go stand in the doorway (structurally stronger than the rest of the edifice) and wait for it to stop, then go outside and assess the damage. More people are killed in earthquakes by running outside than by any other means…they get beaned on the head by falling bricks or chunks of masonry. If your doorways aren’t double-beamed, or there are too many Stooges to fit in them, get under something solid like a desk or sturdy table.

I had two cats at the time. THEY certainly didn’t give any early warning. Instead, during the quake, they circled around the living room floor, looking confused, and giving me dirty looks, as if to say, “what’s that two-legged jerk doing to freak us out THIS time?” I’ve read accounts of unusual pre-quake behavior in fish, frogs, horses, birds, and even insects, but I guess that felinoid independent streak was just showing through again.

Anyway, check out Ingrid’s blog, you’ll like it. Also have a gander at these useful articles:

Be safe!  >^.˽.^<

[NB: part of one photo is obscured. just click on it to see it in its amusing entirety.]


  1. […] Please see also Cats in Disaters […]

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