Pets At Hurricane Shelters

Be Prepared with a Pet Plan 

The survival of you, your family, and your pets could depend on your personal disaster plan. The best way to protect your family from the effects of a disaster is to have a disaster plan. If you are a pet owner, that plan must include your pets. Being prepared can save their lives. 

In the event of a disaster, if you must evacuate, the most important thing you can do to protect your pets is to evacuate them, too. Leaving pets behind, even if you try to create a safe place for them, is likely to result in their being injured, lost, or worse. So, prepare now for the day when you and your pets may have to leave your home. 

Pet-Friendly Shelter Registration

It is highly recommended that pets be pre-registered prior to a sheltering event. In order to pre-register your pet you must complete an on-line registration. You will be required to attest to the fact that you have read and will comply with the Pet-Friendly Shelter Agreement and the Pet-Friendly Shelter Checklist. Pre-registrations are only valid for the calendar year in which they were submitted. 

  1. Pet-Friendly Shelter Registration  
  2. Pet-Friendly Shelter Agreement 
  3. Pet-Friendly Shelter Checklist 



All pets must be properly caged.


The medical history and current vaccination records for each pet must be presented upon checking in to the Pet-Friendly Shelter.


Monroe County Code requires that all dogs be collared and tagged with proper license and current vaccination information. 


Proof of Monroe County residency must be provided at Mainland Pet-Friendly Shelters.


See the Pet-Friendly Shelter Checklist for a complete list of pet sheltering provisions and vaccination requirements. These items MUST accompany your pet, or it will not be granted access to the Pet-Friendly Shelter.


Pets Accepted 

  1. Dogs, with license and vaccination records
  2. Cats, with vaccination records
  3. Ferrets, with vaccination records
  4. Pocket Pets (Hamsters, Gerbils, Mice, Rats, Guinea Pigs, and Rabbits under 10 pounds)
  5. Birds
  6. Reptiles (In-County shelters only. Mainland shelters do not accept reptiles)


Pet-Friendly Shelters

All Monroe County General Population Shelters are Pet-Friendly

In County (Category 1 & 2)

  • Key West High School, 2100 Flagler Avenue 
  • Sugarloaf School, 225 Crane Boulevard, MM19 
  • Coral Shores High School, 89591 Overseas Highway, MM89.9 in Tavernier
  • Marathon High School, 350 Sombrero Road

Out of County (Category 3, 4, & 5)

  1. E. Darwin Fuchs Pavilion, 10901 SW 24th Street


Pet Shelter Rules

Pet owners are reminded that pets require special consideration. Pet owners must be prepared to care for and maintain control over their pets at all times. 

In order to avoid injury to response personnel or the public from anxious or aggressive pets, owners are required to acknowledge and adhere to the rules and regulations contained in the Pet Sheltering Agreement

Transportation of Pets

The Pet Evacuation and Transportation and Transportation Standards Act of 2006 (H.R.3858) has mandated that such evacuation plans “take into account the needs of individuals with household pets and service animals prior to, during, and following a major disaster or emergency.” Pets need to be properly caged before boarding Public Transportation.

Dogs, Cats, Ferrets, and Pocket Pets  

Mammals should be transported in secure carriers suitable for maintaining the animals while sheltered. Take bedding materials, food bowls, and water bottles.


Birds should be transported in a secure travel cage or carrier. In cold weather, wrap a blanket over the carrier and warm up the car before placing birds inside. During warm weather, carry a plant mister to mist the bird’s feathers periodically. Do not put water inside the carrier during transport. Instead, provide a few slices of fresh fruits and vegetables with high water content. Have a photo for identification and leg bands. If the carrier does not have a perch, line it with paper towels and change them frequently. Try to keep the carrier in a quiet area. Do not let the birds out of the cage or carrier.


Snakes can be transported in a pillowcase, but they must be transferred to more secure housing when they reach the evacuation site. If your snakes require frequent feedings, carry food with you. Take a water bowl large enough for soaking as well as a heating pad. When you are transporting other retiles such as lizards and turtles, follow the same directions as for birds.