CIA: Care-giving, Isaac & Anxiety – Helping Kids & Pets
Are you in anticipation or experiencing anxiety? Some are feeling both over Isaac. Who’s Isaac? Not my Dad, but the tropical storm (or potential hurricane) with the same name whipping up in the Gulf of Mexico.
Even if you are not worried about Isaac, you may be feeling anxiety over how to prepare for storms or the unexpected in general and what to tell your kids or what to do for your pets.
(BTW: Did you know the name “Isaac” means LAUGHTER?! I really like that name. Though I doubt anybody is laughing over this storm!) Damage from storms is no laughing matter. However, a little laughter can help us all feel better and can help ease anxiety and care-giving. What makes you laugh? (My hubby, kids and goofy jokes.)
It’s practical for care-givers, partners, parents and pet owners to have on hand a current Hurricane Guide. I’ve been reading over “Making it through the Storm: Season Hurricane Guide 2012 from Wink News.” Please Read a Storm Guide over and make a Family Disaster Plan! It will help ease anxiety for everyone!
“BEST ADVICE: OBEY ORDERS FOR SURVIVAL!!”
“If Emergency Management Officials issue a mandatory evacuation order, the best advice possible is to OBEY THE ORDER AND HEAD TO SAFER SURROUNDINGS!”
Here’s a Summary of Practical Tips to help with kids and pets.
What do We Tell the Kids?
- Explain, don’t exaggerate–they need info just like parents do. Tell your children what can happen during a storm. Let them know you may have to change plans and move quickly. Explain that life or routine may be disrupted for a few days. Give them info on a need-to-know basis. Don’t overwhelm with too much info.
- Be selective about what weather reports or what you listen to together. Don’t frighten them. Ask your kids what their fears are and reassure them. Get prepared together. Let them help. They will learn life skills.
- Make a family plan for disaster scenarios and practice it. Pick a couple of places to meet in case anyone gets separated, one close to home and another not-so-close.
- Make sure your kids have contact info for out-of-town relatives/close friends and make sure to remind them about emergency contacts on a regular basis.
- Teach your kids about emergency procedures, exits, sirens, flashing lights, etc. Stay prepared together.
- Activity Kits for kids can help occupy them and keep them safe. Coloring books, arts-n-crafts, puzzles, toys.
What about our Pets?
- Make sure to include your pets in your family disaster plan. Our furry/feathered family members cannot survive alone.
- Few shelters allow pets, so be sure to find out that info. in advance. Contact friends, veterinarians or boarding kennels in advance to arrange accommodations for your pets in case you have to evacuate.
- Some Hotels may take your pet, so if you get out of town, find one that will welcome your pet.
- Watch your animals (like kids closely) they may be affected by the storm or become aggressive after.
- Keep Pet ID tags up-to-date. Make sure any collars are secure.
- Pack an Emergency Kit for your pet. Include extra food, water, treats, veterinary records, kitty litter, doggie dishes.
Hoping this blog is helpful to You. Keep kids and pets SAFE!
I HOPE YOU are SAFE, too! Let’s All SAFELY Weather: Care-giving, Isaac and anxiety…with intelligence!
Winifred, J. (2012). CIA: Care-giving, Isaac & Anxiety – Helping Kids & Pets. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 19, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/wellness/2012/08/cia-care-giving-isaac-anxiety-helping-kids-pets/