Guest Blogger: Pet Lawyer Discusses Emergency Care

 |  Jun 4th 2008  |   1 Contribution

Today's guest blogger is Michael Blacksburg, Attorney at Law. He is an expert in estate-planning, helping to ensure that a pet is cared for if a guardian dies or becomes incapacitated.

Michael Blacksburg

Emergency Care for Your Dog

Most of us dont like preparing for worst-case scenarios. Unfortunately, nearly 10% of all animals dropped off at shelters got there because their owners died. It totals up to 500,000 pets each year. Below youll find helpful tips on how to create a safety net for your pet, just in case something happens to you.


  1. Find a reliable emergency care person for your dogs. Ask them to agree to take on caretaking responsibilities should something happen to you.
  2. Give that person limited power of attorney. You may also want to provide them with access to a particular savings account to help with expenses.
  3. Write out instructions on how to care for your pets. Make sure that the emergency caretaker knows where those instructions are. Include instructions on food, medication and exercise needs, and include contact information for your dogs veterinarian.
  4. Be sure to give the caretaker keys to your home.
  5. Carry a card in your wallet that says that you have pets at home. Your emergency card should include the name and phone number of your emergency pet caretaker. (I give my clients a Pet Alert Card that ensures that a caretaker will be contacted in case of emergency.)

An emergency caregivers limited power of attorney ends if you should die. At that point, a will or living trust needs to take over. For more information on how to prepare for longer-term solutions for your pet in case something happens to you, read about pet trusts.

- Michael Blacksburg,


Dog Laws & Legislation Forum
Dogster Answers: Laws & Legislation


Tip: Creating a profile and avatar takes just a minute and is a great way to participate in Dogster's community of people who are passionate about dogs.

blog comments powered by Disqus