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COVID-19 Coronavirus Updates and Guidance

The County is taking a number of actions to keep residents safe and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Find status information for County operations and services.

Emergency Preparedness for Pets

If you own pets, they should be part of your emergency plan.

Plan in advance how you will care for your animals in the event of an emergency that may include a water or power outage, or that may require you to leave your home for a period of time.

Nationwide, emergency management officials advise families to prepare to get through the first three days of an emergency on their own. 

Food and Supplies

Make sure you have enough food and water to see your pets through this three-day period. You should have on hand at least one gallon of water per person, per day—and count each pet as a person.

If your pet takes medications, make sure you have extra on hand.

Also be sure to have a secure carrier, leash or harness for your pet.

A Place to Stay

Many shelters do not accept pets. Plan in advance to leave pets with friends or family or a boarding facility. Or research hotels and motels that accept pets and where you could stay if you need to evacuate.

County Pet-Friendly Shelter

During certain small-scale emergencies, Baltimore County emergency managers may open a "pet-friendly" shelter for leashed or crated dogs, cats and other pets (excluding exotic pets) weighing less than 80 pounds.

Animals housed at county-run shelters are not allowed to intermingle with human evacuees in order to protect citizens with pet allergies or a fear of animals. They will be housed elsewhere on site, and pet owners will be able to visit and care for them.

Pets at county shelters require the following:

  • A leash and a carrier. Animals must be leashed or crated. The carrier should be large enough for the animal to stand up and turn around in.
  • Pet identification, including license and rabies tag. County law requires a pet license. For ID, consider microchipping. The County's Animal Services center in Baldwin offers microchipping services for a low fee.
  • Contact information and a photo of you and your pet.
  • At least three days' worth of food and plenty of extra water.
  • Extra medications, if your pet takes them.
  • Pet sanitation supplies.
  • The pet's immunization and medical records. County Animal Services requires these.

Additional Information

Revised July 22, 2019         


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