Polk County pet shelters filling up as people flee Hurricane Matthew's path.
LAKELAND, Fla. - In Polk County they are expecting bad weather. But nothing to the degree of what people will experience on the East Coast of Florida.
That’s why they are bringing themselves and their pets to Lakeland.
Jennifer Caton is leaving her two dogs behind at Four Paws Only.
“We’ve never boarded before. So this is definitely an experience. I’m worried about them being scared,” she said.
This family left the east coast to stay with family in Lakeland. But the dogs will be boarded with several dozen other K9’s. Many who were also evacuated because of Hurricane Matthew.
“Our phone’s been ringing off the hook. We’ve had people from Volousia County, Orlando, Coco Beach, Daytona,” said manager Jodie Rueter.
Officials said many people forget to include their pets in family evacuation plans. So it’s always best to plan ahead.
Vaccinations have to be up to date before kennels will accept animals. Microchipping pets can also be helpful if they get separated.
And if you don’t want to board them, keep a list of pet friendly hotels. Some hotels might even waive a no pet policy during a serious storm.
Jennifer doesn’t know how many days her dogs will have to stay.
“I’m hoping one, but with the size of the storm and the way everything is looking right now. I’m guessing it might be two or even three,” she said.
Four Paws Only is filling up, but they say they’ve got more dogs on the way from the east coast and they definitely have room for them.