[April 14, 2014; Philadelphia, PA] — Penn Vet is joining the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region III in the 2014 Petpared Initiative to encourage pet owners to be more resilient in the face of disasters.

On May 8, 2014 at 12:30 p.m. EDT, Dr. Deborah Mandell of Penn Vet’s Ryan Hospital will participate in the #Petpared Twitter Chat with FEMA Region III, American Humane Association, ASPCA, American Red Cross, PetSmart Charities, Red Paw Emergency Relief Team, Schuylkill CART, Virginia Search and Recuse Dog Association, and others to help pet owners understand what they need to do to prepare for disasters and encourage them to take action. Dr. Mandell will be tweeting from @DebbieMandell1. Penn Vet will retweet from @pennvet. The public can ask their preparedness questions using #petpared. May 8 is National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day.

Dr. Deborah Mandell, Penn Vet, #Petpared Twitter ChatDr. Mandell is an adjunct associate professor of emergency care at Penn Vet. She also serves as a pet advisor to the American Red Cross, and recently provided content for their new Pet First Aid App.  

The goal of the Petpared Initiative is to increase the number of citizens who understand the hazards most relevant to their family and pets, know the corresponding protective actions to take to prepare their family and pets, and practice a real-time action to increase their preparedness.

There are simple steps pet owners can take to increase both their own and their pet’s preparedness. Through the use of social media platforms, pet owners will have access to the information they need through a variety of different mediums to increase their preparedness. This will also give pet owners an opportunity to engage and share their experiences with the pet community.

Having a pet emergency supply kit is just one way to prepare. There are also simple steps you can take now to be prepared for all hazards such as developing a family emergency plan, having an emergency supply kit ready to go, and learning about your risks. Other resources to prepare your pet and your family for disasters are available at Ready.gov/caring-animals.

About Penn Vet

Penn Vet is a global leader in veterinary medicine education, research, and clinical care. Founded in 1884, Penn Vet is the only veterinary school developed in association with a medical school. The school is a proud member of the One Health Initiative, linking human, animal, and environmental health.

Penn Vet serves a diverse population of animals at its two campuses, which include extensive diagnostic and research laboratories. Ryan Hospital in Philadelphia provides care for dogs, cats, and other domestic/companion animals, seeing nearly 33,000 patients a year. New Bolton Center, Penn Vet’s large-animal hospital on nearly 700 acres in rural Kennett Square, PA, cares for horses and livestock/farm animals, treating 33,000 patients each year – 4,100 in the hospital and 29,000 at farms through the Field Service. In addition, New Bolton Center’s campus includes a swine center, working dairy, and poultry unit that provide valuable research for the agriculture industry.

For more information, visit www.vet.upenn.edu.