As Hurricane Sandy approached the East Coast in October 2012, the Federal Emergency Management Agency relied on the AVMA’s Pet Ownership Calculator to help plan response efforts.
The calculator uses community size and data from the AVMA’s U.S. Pet Ownership and Demographics Sourcebook to give an estimate of the number of pet-owning households and pet population in a community.
Dr. Cheryl L. Eia, AVMA coordinator of emergency preparedness and response, said FEMA turned to the calculator to determine the number of pet owners and pets that potentially would need assistance with evacuation and sheltering during Hurricane Sandy.
While the calculator draws on national rates of pet ownership, the sourcebook also provides state rates of cat and dog ownership and regional rates of bird and horse ownership. The demographics of a community might be more similar to those of the state or region than the nation, although the state and regional data have a higher margin of error than the national data.