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K9 Bug-Out Evacuation List

Evacuation Supply List and Books 
Emergency Survival for Dogs and Owners 

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Dog and Owner 72 hour Emergency Go-Bag---List Below

I introduced the Dog Bug-Out Bag concept to the world in 2011 when I wrote the Family Disaster Dogs book and started this blog.  

A Family Disaster Dogs Evacuation Bag is made up of emergency survival supplies carried in a dog saddlebag by any dog. 

Every pet and person in the household should have its own bag of survival supplies to last at least 3 days. The Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA here in the United States recommends that every person have a 72 hour pack, or Go-bag ready for emergencies. 

I include our dogs; and some cats can also carry a go-bag. 

All pets should have a bag of survival supplies.

These supplies are the same as those recommended and carried by rescue workers, firefighters, military and other search team members so that they can be ready for any situations if they themselves are injured, hungry, lost, or cut off from other team members and outside. In order to survive, every team member carries a backpack with these supplies as part of their uniform. 
The benefit of your dog learning to carry this backpack is explained in several of the lessons here at Family Disaster Dogs.

I have added links to some items on this page so those of you who are unfamiliar with the items can learn more and get them. I do make a very small amount off purchases to help maintain the Family Disaster Dogs free website. Good luck!

Every dog can carry something helpful in an emergency. Don't let the size of your dog stop you from taking advantage of what help the dog can be. Dog backpacks come in all sizes. 

Even tiny toy dogs can carry something, ID cards, your eyeglasses :) medications while you carry the dog while evacuating then those items are handy and you have more room in your own bag.

Not only are these supplies used by rescue workers they are recommended for us as well. I highly recommend if you do no other dog training to your dog, do at least teach them to carry extra survival gear for you. That one thing could save your life or a loved one's.

F.E.M.A.'s website 
suggests that we assemble the kit well in advance of an emergency. They want us to be ready because we may have to evacuate at a moment’s notice and take essentials with us and that we will probably not have time to search for the supplies we need or to shop for them. We may need to survive on our own after an emergency. 

This means having your own food, water and other supplies in sufficient quantity to last for at least 72 hours. Local officials and relief workers will be on the scene after a disaster but they cannot reach everyone immediately. You could get help in hours or it might take days.

Additionally, basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewage treatment and telephones may be cut off for days or even a week, or longer. Your supplies kit should contain items to help you manage during these outages. F.E.M.A. 2013)
I've found most of the lists for emergency supply kits follow a general rule of thumb that usually contain the same recommended items. 

I think it’s a good idea to study this list based on experience, location and disaster possibilities then add items to it that might be useful for you and your environment.  

Here's a good example of a dog emergency kit and if your dog can carry it themselves put the items in a dog backpack like below. 

The list below is not large because it is meant to be lightweight and take up less space so you can carry food, water and a change of clothes in your backpack on your dog as well as yourself. You may have to travel several miles on foot and the weight of a backpack can become a critical aspect when you have a long way to walk. 

I recommend you carry a bag with your personal supplies and your dog carry one with dog supplies. Then you will be able to travel further and faster with your dog’s help. Several lessons are included in Family Disaster Dog Training that show you how to teach your dog to evacuate with you.

The 72 hour Bag or Kit recommended by FEMA and emergency management directors worldwide is designed for you to carry so you can walk to a safe location and survive for 3 days until help arrives. Read my books or articles about how-to pack the list below in 72 hour saddlebags for each of your dogs and cats. Horses can have one too!

Unless you have a very small dog or pet, such as a bird, don’t worry about having a dog crate to evacuate with unless you want to drag it along with you as you walk. Instead, a leash is more important to have, along with basic obedience training for your dog in case a leash is not available. 

Crates can be used when evacuating by vehicles but it is a very bad idea to count on using a car to go very far after a disaster. It's best if a crate could be waiting for you at your evacuation destination.

A pillow case is handy to hold cats or other small mammals during extremely frightening times because the animal cannot see what is going on, they can breath and the material is comforting like a nest. Birds can be slipped into a sock with the head out of a hole or gently covered so they do not see and get upset. 

Most animals can become very scared when people get excited by emergencies or traumatic events. It is safer to crate untrained pets and small pets, contain them or put them in a quite area away from the excitement.

If left on their own, most animals will seek shelter and come out after the excitement calms down. They will stay close to home unless they are scared away, and then most will return to a familiar location in a day or two. 


Animal rescuers advise if you are unable to take pets with you do not confine them up in crates, cages or tied so they cannot escape flood waters, fires and rubble. When disasters strike and SHTF animals know often before we do, they feel, smell, sense and hear the event coming and they run! If they can, or fly. Allow pets an escape route if at all possible only when you cannot take them with you. A window open enough for them to push out in a panic, is one idea.

The following list of emergency supplies is not the usual list of items needed in recommended kits or 72 hour packs. I've added extra items based on my SAR and Red Cross training plus personal experience.

With the increase in hurricanes, tropical storms, rising sea levels and typhoons 

Do Not Forget Life Vest for each pet and person

Dog Saddlebags comes in all sizes

Family Disaster Dog 72 hour Ready Bag

Also known as a K9 Go-Bag and Bug-Out Bag, or backpack, saddlebags, rucksack

List of Items 

These items go into your dog's backpack with copies of dog ID, health record and your contact information, next of kin or emergency contact, don't forget a mask! 

You keep copies of paperwork in your own backpack too.

Waterproof everything by placing each item in its own sealed baggie even if the dog backpack is waterproof.

Items to Pack in Bug-Out Go-Bag :

  • A current color photograph of you and your pet together (in case you are separated)
  • Food, water – at the least a 3-day supply for each pet and person
  • Hang water bottles from your dog's pack or harness, and your backpack too.
  • Hint ** Empty drinking water bottles are great to recycle and use for carrying food like instant oatmeal, powdered milk, dry or freeze dried pet food, powder Gatorade, coffee-sugar-creamer many foods come to mind that can be easily prepared with water.  
  • Bowls - non-spill able w/lid if possible  (<< click to see which bowl and dog food carry bag I like)
  • Collar and leash -for dogs and cats
  • A pair of woman's pantie hoses or stockings ( Stockings are compact with many uses, such as a piece as a muzzle for a hurt animal, a filter to strain dirt from water, a bandage plus they can keep you warm or be used as an ace elastic bandage) 
  • Instead of Poop Scoop Baggies just pack some regular sandwich bags so you can use them for other purposes too. 
  • Treats, toy, at least 3 days worth of light weight high quality dog food. 
  • 1 small lightweight blanket, towel, or newspaper for warmth
  • ID tag should always be on pet's harness or collar
  • Extra name tag should be on the backpack, be sure to put a nameplate on your bag too, on attached so it will not come off. With your cell phone number.
  • In case you can drive away in order to evacuate or bug out. Pet carrier or crate for each pet labeled with pet and owner’s information (keep near your bag).
  • Allergy medicine or other special medicines with instructions, Masks, baby wipes


Pet First Aid Kit  Pack below items in its own small waterproof container or baggie that will fit in the dog's and your own backpack.

  • Scissors-other pocket knife
  • Band-aids don't stick to dog fur but a few for your friends can come in handy.
  • Several Gauze pads and medical cotton squares
  • Alcohol Wipes
  • Instant cold pack (to big to carry-cold mud works in a pinch)
  • Medical and Adhesive tape
  • Tweezers
  • 1 small bar Soap
  • 1 small tube Antiseptic cream
  • 1 small bottle Eye drops
  • 10-20 Cotton balls
  • Powder Gatorade or electrolytes (Replenish is a powdered water additive that tastes great to dogs!)
  • Large Tea Bags (stops bleeding)
  • Vet Wrap (like an ace bandage for animals and sticks to itself, very handy)
  • Glow lite Sticks (hang one on your dog and self at night to be seen)


Wrap some pieces of duck tape around one of the bottles for later use, in case you need a piece of tape you can pull a piece off the bottle which becomes the tape dispenser.

Make sure to waterproof every item.

If you are in snake country put a small container or baggie with the cooking spice Adolf's Meat Tenderizer which contains a papaya fruit extract which neutralizes snake and spider, Scorpion types of venom. I've used it several times with rattlesnake bit dogs. 

Important... pack 2 or more tubes depending on the size of your dog of Nutri-Cal Concentrated Dog Food. 

Nutri-Cal is a concentrated nutrition source for animals that reuse to eat or cannot eat, usually due to health or age. This is a good standby to have in an emergency kit in case you run out of dog and cat food or one of your pets get sick. 1 teaspoon per 10 lbs. body weight will keep your dog alive after you run out of dog food. 1 tube will keep a small dog well fed without any other food for about a week, a large dog 3 days.

Freeze Dried pet food is lightweight and keeps 1 year

Many items can be hung on the backpacks with twine to make more room inside.

Here's more....I pack a lot on a large dog pack !

  • A compass and a map of your area
  • A small flashlight with extra batteries or another light source
  • Water Purification Tablets or Powder
  • 12 Hour Emergency Bright Sticks\
  • 16 Hour Hand Warmer
  • Mylar Emergency Blanket
  • Extra Collar and Leash Set
  • Reflective Dog Vest
  • Rain Coat and Boots will give your dog some protection 
  • in a nuclear fall out 
  • Body rain suit for yourself and family in your dog's saddlebag
  • Tie-out leash or chain 10-15 ft. long 
  • Flotation Vest (Life Jackets) for each person and pet
  • Change of clothes
  • Pack at least 3 days of pet food in a backpack or duffel bag. The more the better. 

Speaking of pet food, I've recently read an article trying to raise awareness on anal gland issues in dogs. As retired pet groomer I know this is a common complaint in dogs of all ages. If your dog shows any symptoms, you can simply start replacing his regular dry food with dog food for anal glands.

Here's a great place to read Reviews for Pet Products and Food  from My Dog's Top Reviews.



Check out my books on Amazon or email for author copy
Audible * Kindle

 "Evacuate with Your Dogs Help " by Amber Higgins

Includes how-to train any dog to wear a bug-out bag
Detailed list of items to pack for pets and people
How-to prepare to go to shelters with a pet
Pet Evacuation Laws
Dog CPR and Heimlich Maneuver
Read a Free preview or Read in Kindle Lending Library

46 page paperback 
Amazon or email for author copy
The link below is where you can read it online on any device)

"Family Disaster Dogs" book 

200+ pages of easy do-at-home dog training lessons that show you how your dog can rescue you and find lost family after disasters, bad weather, floods, storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, bombs, earthquakes. Includes Evacuate with Your Dog book lessons, bag list and much more. Includes the first lessons about training a dog to find people using Mantrailing. 

Train a dog to go between 2 people, fetch items by name-like "get the water bottle or first aid kit" in case you are trapped and the dog is not. Dogs can learn so much to help us.. have a look!

Used worldwide. On Kindle, Audible, Amazon paperback, Online retailers, Book Stores - ask your local book store or library to order- I donate books to non-profits for fundraisers.  email me for a copy if you cannot get one or want a signed author copy.

Here's the latest book 

"Start Mantrailing-Step by Step Train a Dog to Find People for Fun, Sport and Work"

Featuring dog and handler teams from Scotland UK and the US using this method to find people with a dog.

Used worldwide by real Search and Rescue/Recovery K9SAR trainers and instructors.

Mantrailing is a K9 Search and Rescue specialty that is quickly becoming popular as a sport and recreation for all dogs to enjoy. Mantrailing dogs use the nose to scent discriminate one person from all other people to locate the one particular person.

A truly amazing fact about Mantrailing is how quickly most dogs’ take to this type of training and how quickly the dogs find people. Dogs love to use their nose to find people. The fun part of Mantrailing is that we follow the dog and allow the dog to lead the way!

By reading this book, you and the dog will be finding a person from the first day of training and beyond. Each training session uses a time tested and proven step by step method for solid reliable success on the trail. You will learn to read the dog and the dog will learn to tell you what they find. Both of you will have a great introduction to the world of K9SAR.

Teach your dogs and kids with my picture book for children of all ages!

My Children's Picture Book


With illustrations by UK Doggie Cartoonist Helen Scotty King

Available in paperback, Audible and Kindle

Here's a couple Emergency Survival Disaster Kits to have a look at...stay safe everyone

Urban Survival Bug Out Bag, Choose from 2 or 4 Person Emergency Disaster Kit, 72-hour, Emergency Zone Brand (4 Person)

Survival Shack Emergency Survival Shelter Tent | 2 Person Mylar Thermal Shelter | 8' X 5' All Weather Tube Tent | Reflective Material Conserves Heat | Lightweight | Waterproof | Best Survival Gear


Pet protection said...

Oh, that's a wise idea

Unknown said...

Thanks, Glad you liked it !

Author Amber Higgins

Author Amber Higgins
Click Pic to Visit my author page

Welcome UK and Worldwide Visitors

Welcome UK and worldwide visitors and friends to Family Disaster Dogs online! Although I'm an American author and dog professional the worldwide web has given me the opportunity to connect with some wonderful folks who have contributed pictures for my books. The "Start Mantrailing" book features RRI K9 North Scotland trained Search and Rescue Dog "Amber" on the cover and her teammates training in the book, plus American dogs using my training methods. A portion of sales of the Start Mantrailing book or copies were donated to RRI North Scotland. The children's picture book "My Puppy Can Find Me" has my daughter and bloodhound as illustrations by UK cartoonist Scotty King. You can find the books on Amazon UK or use the contact page to order from me. When you click the links will take you to your own county pages of this site.

Start Mantrailing Free Preview on Audible, Kindle and Paperback

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What is a Family Disaster Dog? It's Your Dog Trained to Rescue You!

  What is a family disaster dog? It is a dog trained to find and rescue you! The Family Disaster Dog Book  shows you how easy a pet dog of a...

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