By Tracy Warren,2014-05-07 20:44
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    Spartan County

    Animal Emergency Response Plan

    April 2007

    Developed by Spartan County Emergency Management

    In cooperation with

    The County Animal Response Team

    Version 1.3

To: County Emergency Managers & Other Users of this Plan

The Spartan Animal Emergency Response Plan has been developed to assist Michigan counties and

    emergency management units in addressing emergencies and disasters affecting animals. This Plan

    is meant to serve as a “stand-alone plan”, separate from the county emergency plan. For some

    emergency managers who already have an animal plan or annex, it may serve as an animal response

    guide, resource, or reference.

    This Plan is available electronically for download at . The term “Spartan County” is of course a generic county name for Michigan. A county that wishes to adopt this plan in full may download the document and perform a “seek and replace” with their respective

    county name. However, the authors of this template and the Emergency Planning Unit of MSP-

    EMHSD strongly suggest that the user read through the plan and make changes that will address

    needs in his/her respective county.

Note that under the Department of Homeland Security guidelines, members of the County Animal

    Response Team who have a direct and active role in the response process will likely need to meet

    NIMS requirements.

If you have questions, comments, or suggestions regarding the content of this Plan, please contact

    any of the following individuals:

    Dr. Mark Hansen, MSU Extension: (517) 432-7696

    Dr. Nancy Barr, MI Dept of Agriculture: (517) 242-1982

    Dr. Nancy Frank, MI Dept of Agriculture: (517) 373-1077

    Mr. Thom Higinbotham, MSP-EMHSD: (517) 333-5035

The Michigan State Police Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division can also

    answer questions regarding local plans or NIMS compliancy issues.

* We wish to thank the emergency management office in Schuyler County, NY, as the original template for this plan

    was provided by that office. Many changes have been made, however, to adapt this plan for use in Michigan regarding

    animal legislation, resources, forms, and content information in general.

     Page 2 of 41



    1.1 Purpose Statement

    1.2 Scope


    2.1 County Animal Response Team (CART)

    2.2 Resource Groups and Agencies


    3.1 Legal Considerations

    3.2 County Animal Populations


    4.1 General

    4.2 Notification & Communications

    4.3 Public Information

    4.4 Response

    4.5 Recovery


    6.0 APPROVAL


    A. Public Education Messages

    B. Animal Care Resources (Feed, Bedding, and Confinement)

    C. Animal Holding Areas for Spartan County

    D. Hotels / Motels Accepting Animals

    E. Animal Transportation Resources

    F. Guidelines for Handling Horse, Cattle and Other Livestock During Emergencies

    G. Emergency Housing and Care for Household Pets and Exotics

    H. Veterinary Resources

    I. Volunteer Resources

    J. County Animal Response Team

     Page 3 of 41



    Spartan County recognizes a need for pro-active disaster planning for its agencies, farms,

    businesses, and individual citizens. This animal disaster plan has been developed primarily for the

    safety of Spartan County residents and visitors. It also supports the continuance of vital agriculture

    operations, promotes responsible animal care and companionship, and reduces harmful

    interactions between humans and non-domestic animals in the event of a disaster. It is intended to

    organize a system to allocate proper and pertinent resources.

Failure to plan for the animal population will affect the viability of disaster plans for people. For

    instance, if the disaster warrants an evacuation, many people will not evacuate without their

    animals or will delay their own evacuation to first make preparations for animals they must leave

    behind. These refusals or delays begin a chain reaction that can seriously jeopardize the overall

    disaster plan.

Further, failure to plan for animals prior to an emergency may lead to serious public health

    concerns during an incident. Injured, ill or, dead animals can pose disease and injury hazards to

    the public, which may add strain to an already over-taxed emergency medical system.

    1.1 Purpose Statement

    To protect the public health, the public food supply, domesticated and wild animal

    resources, the environment, the agricultural economy, and to ensure the humane care and

    treatment of animals in case of an emergency, including floods, severe storms, tornadoes,

    drought, fire, explosion, building collapse, commercial transportation accidents, chemical

    spills, winter storms, power outages, or other situations that can cause animal suffering.

    1.2 Scope

    This plan is intended for use by Spartan County government and agencies as a guideline

    for implementing immediate action to provide care and control of animals, thereby

    minimizing animal suffering in the event of a significant emergency. In the event of an

    emergency, care and control measures outlined herein will apply to all animals, wild and

    domestic, regardless of ownership.

    This plan addresses planning and response with regard to all-hazards, however incidents

    which are due to significant animal disease will require oversight by the Michigan

    Department of Agriculture based on established laws and response plans. If incidents of

    this nature come to your attention, the Michigan Department of Agriculture’s State

    Veterinarians Office should be notified immediately. For your safety and for biosecurity

    reasons, do not attempt to move or handle sick or dead animals that may have been

    affected by an animal disease.

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2.1 County Animal Response Team (CART)

Spartan County Emergency Management

    Responsibilities: Coordinate support agencies to manage animal protection in emergencies. Activate the Emergency Operations Center, if necessary. Responsible for overall direction and control of the emergency incident.

Spartan County Animal Control Division

    Responsibilities: Provide and coordinate personnel and equipment to collect, rescue and shelter stray or aggressive companion animals. Assist in identifying, surveying, and maintaining a list of small animal sheltering facilities and transportation as part of the County Animal Response Team.

Spartan County Public Health Department

    Responsibilities: Provide services which address injuries/bites/diseases related to the protection of humans and animals. Assists the MDA and DEQ in the disposal of dead animals that may impact the public health and in minimizing zoonotic disease outbreaks during an emergency.

Michigan State University Extension of Spartan County

    Responsibilities: Assist in identifying and procuring additional resources, expertise, volunteers, personnel, equipment, and shelter as required to care for livestock and large companion animals during an emergency. Assist in identifying, surveying, and maintaining a list of large animal and equine sheltering facilities and transportation as part of the County Animal Response Team.

Michigan Department of Agriculture-Animal Industry Division

    Responsibilities: Assist in providing information and direction whenever possible with regard to the general health of animals. Responsible for enforcement of state regulations concerning animal health and the movements of animals affected by those regulations.

Spartan County Private Veterinarian

     Responsibilities: Assist in providing information and direction with regard to the general

     health of animals within their expertise. Provide assistance with identifying needs of

     animals in shelter situations.

Spartan County Humane Society

    Responsibilities: Provide trained personnel (staff or volunteers) and equipment to assist in the protection of animals during an emergency, working in cooperation with animal control division.

American Red Cross

    Responsibilities: Advise and work with the CART when planning locations for human shelters so that animal shelters can be co-located if possible. Advise on general issues related to human care and sheltering which may be impacted by animal care facilities.

     Page 5 of 41

    2.2 Resource Groups & Agencies (Any of these may also be considered for the CART)

Michigan Veterinary Medical Association

    Provide information on local veterinarians. Encourage their involvement in local animal emergencies and disasters.

Private Veterinarians and Veterinary Clinics

    In accordance with clinic policies, provide trained personnel, equipment, and shelter as required to care for pets from evacuated citizens and in cases when established animal shelters are filled or destroyed. Provide medical care within their area of expertise.

Spartan County Farm Bureau

    Support Michigan State University Extension, if requested, in providing and identifying facilities, equipment, and trained personnel to assist in the transportation and housing of farm livestock in an emergency shelter situation.

Local Animal Rescue Groups

    Provide trained volunteers and equipment to assist in the rescue and sheltering of animals during an emergency.

US Forest Service at National Forests

    Provide confinement for displaced livestock in grazing areas.

Private Farms, Kennels, and Stables

    Provide shelter and supplies to care for displaced livestock and / or domesticated animals.

MI Dept. of Environmental Quality

    Provide resources necessary for protection of environment and water quality related to animal carcass disposal and decomposition.

MI Department of Natural Resources

    Provide trained personnel and equipment as required to protect sick and/or injured non-domestic animals. Coordinate measures to minimize damage and danger to wildlife, as appropriate. Advise on issues related to licensed captive cervid facilities (deer and elk).

Licensed Wild Animal Rehabilitators

    Provide housing and care to sick and/or injured non-domestic animals in cooperation with MDNR.

USDA Farm Service Agency (County Office)

    Chairs and coordinates the activities of the USDA County Emergency Board which provides damage/loss assessment of local agricultural commodities; the USDA-CEB includes representatives of local USDA agencies.

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Through effective animal protection planning and organization, all disaster relief efforts will be more


The owners of household pets, exotics and livestock, when notified of an impending emergency,

    will take reasonable steps to shelter and provide for animals under their care and/or control.

    Owners of animals should make every effort to have all animals identified and to maintain records

    of this identification. Some livestock species require identification by law, and owners must keep

    these records.

Natural, technological, or manmade disasters could affect the well being of domesticated and / or

    non-domesticated animals. This, in turn can affect the county’s overall emergency response plans.

Spartan County should plan for animal-related emergency situations and implement response and

    recovery operations utilizing local resources. State, federal, and private organizations may provide

    animal care and rescue assistance in emergencies, when requested.

Animal protection planning should ensure the proper care and recovery of animals impacted during

    an emergency. This should include measures to identify housing and shelter for animals, establish

    methods of communicating information to the public, collect stray or lost animals, procure

    necessary supplies for the care of the animals, and plan for animal release and return to owners or

    to natural habitat for non-domestic animals.

Public information statements, including locations where animals may be accepted during

    emergency situations, will be issued through various media outlets.

A large-scale emergency in Spartan County may warrant an immediate response from state and

    local personnel, agencies, and organizations. However, emergency situations may become

    compounded due to the nature of the emergency and may also require activation of additional

    specialized agencies through mutual aid agreements.

    3.1 Legal Considerations

    It is important to note that animals can be classified broadly into two categories: privately

    owned and publicly owned. Livestock and companion animals are private property; they

    belong to individuals or entities and have an economic value that may require

    compensation if those animals are ordered destroyed. Wildlife, both game and non-game

    species, belongs to the people of the State of Michigan, and separate laws govern them.

    Federal and state laws govern how animals are cared for and handled. Some of the most


    Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act of 2006

    Amends the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C.

    5121 et seq. to ensure that State and local emergency preparedness operational plans

    address the needs of individuals with household pets and service animals following a major

    disaster or emergency.

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    Animal Industry Act (Public Act 466 of 1988, MCL 287.701 et seq.) Prevention, control, and eradication of infectious, contagious diseases, or toxicological

    contamination of livestock and domesticated animals; importation and movement

    requirements; indemnification in some cases

Michigan Public Health Code (Public Act 368 of 1978, MCL 333.1101, et seq.)

    Prevention and control of diseases impacting humans; license of veterinary medicine; use

    of controlled substances for animal euthanasia

Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act (Public Act 451 of 1994, MCL 324.101,

    et seq.)

    Wildlife and habitat conservation and management, including taking, possession, and


Animals Running at Large (Public Act 328 of 1976, MCL 433.11, et seq.)

    Escaped livestock running at large

    Dangerous Animals (Public Act 426 of 1988, MCL 287.321) Confinement and destruction of dangerous animals; penalties

Bodies of Dead Animals Act (Public Act 239 of 1982, MCL 287.651 et seq.)

    Disposal requirements for livestock

    Dog Law (Public Act 339 of 1919, MCL 287.261) Licensing, regulating, destruction of dogs; payment for losses

Additionally, there are many other state laws, as well as federal laws and regulations that

    control the care and handling of animals. For additional guidance, contact the Michigan

    Dept. of Agriculture, the Michigan Dept. of Natural Resources, or your local animal control


In an emergency situation, the Emergency Management Act (Public Act 390 of 1976, MCL

    30.401 et seq.) may be used, and depending on the circumstances, the laws and

    regulations governing both domestic and wild animals may be suspended as provided by


    3.2 County Animal Populations

Determining the number and type of animals in Spartan County is an important component

    of planning for an emergency. Ascertaining what livestock industries exist and how many

    animals those industries represent, as well as estimating the number of companion animals

    in the area, is crucial for resource planning.

Methods exist to determine or estimate the number of large and small animals in your

    county. For farm animals, the Michigan/National Agricultural Statistics Service provides

    numbers of farms and numbers of farm animals per county. Go to

    and follow the "statistics" link.

Nationally, approximately 60% of households own companion animals, with most owning

    more than one animal. The American Veterinary Medical Association provides estimation

    formulas for dogs, cats, birds, and horses at:

     Page 8 of 41 Other web sites that may be helpful

    are the U.S. Census Bureau and the American Pet Products

    Manufacturer’s Association


4.1 General

    The primary and support agencies will manage and coordinate, or assist in coordinating, local animal protection activities. These agencies will use established animal protection and support organizations, processes, and procedures. Responsibility for situation assessment and determination of resource needs in the event of a large-scale emergency lies primarily with Spartan County Emergency Management, the local incident commander, and Spartan County Animal Control, or the designated lead member of the CART. Depending upon the nature of the emergency, other partners may assist as listed under primary and support agencies in section 2.0, 2.1, and 2.2 of this plan.

When county resources and mutual aid agreements are insufficient, animal

    protection assistance and resources such as food, medicine, shelter material, specialized personnel, and additional veterinary medical professionals, will be requested from the State of Michigan via processes outlined under the Michigan Emergency Management Act, PA 390. Should the need for State or Federal

    resources arise, the State Emergency Operations Center will coordinate the requests for assistance.

    Animal protection operations will be managed using the Spartan County Comprehensive Emergency Plan and NIMS - the National Incident Management System. Public health concerns will be managed in accordance with appropriate Spartan County plans and procedures.

Animals included under the plan: Domestic and non-domestic.

    The sheltering, protection, and identification of domestic animals (including livestock) are the responsibility of their owners. In times of emergency or disaster, public interests may take precedence with regard to sheltering, evacuation, and care of animals.

    Domestic animals that are lost, stray, incapable of being cared for by their owners, or a danger to themselves or the public will be the responsibility of the County Animal Response Team. These animals will be sheltered, fed, and, if possible, returned to their owners. If the animals cannot be returned to their owners, their disposition will be handled in accordance with established animal control guidelines. The animal control guidelines regarding holding periods may need to be extended to provide time to locate owners during a time of disaster.

    Non-domestic animals should be left to their own survival instincts. Non-domestic animals out of their natural habitats that are a danger either to themselves or the public will be the responsibility of the MI Department of Natural Resources. These animals will be returned to their natural habitat if possible.

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4.2 Notification & Communications

This plan and its procedures will be activated in the event of an emergency that results in a

    significant need for animal protection. Spartan County Emergency Management will

    determine when these procedures will be implemented and notify the appropriate primary,

    support, and mutual aid agencies. Spartan County Emergency Management will maintain a

    call down notification system.

Communications among the emergency management coordinator, the County Animal

    Response Team, and support agencies will occur primarily through telephone, facsimile,

    and cellular telephone transmission. Amateur radio will be used as a backup system if other

    communication is impossible due to the nature of the emergency situation. Spartan County

    Emergency Management will maintain a list of radio and TV stations for the purpose of

    public notification when necessary.

    Step 1 Emergency Management Coordinator contacts the designated lead member of the County Animal Response Team (CART), who will serve as part of EOC structure.

    Step 2 The Lead Member of the CART initiates call-down procedure to members.

    Step 3 The lead member of CART or his/her designee from the CART membership will contact additional support agencies as needed.

4.3 Public Information

The Spartan County Public Information Officer will be responsible for the coordination of all

    media activities and press releases associated with the protection of animals.

    Responsibilities may include:

    ? Notifying the public of appropriate shelters at which to leave lost/stray animals,

    animals that citizens cannot care for, or animals that need immediate medical

    assistance. (Appendix A)

    ? Delivering instructions to the public to prepare their pets or farm animals for an

    impending emergency. (Appendix A)

    ? Obtaining animal-related information from members of the CART and/or its support


    ? Promoting public awareness and instructing animal owners on how to prepare and

    react to all types of disasters through literature, community relations and/or


    ? Disseminating public messages for the purpose of recruiting of volunteers to assist

    where needed in the event of a disaster.

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