Team Spotlight: Domestic Animal Care

CatEach month, we will be featuring a different Bainbridge Prepares team so you can get to know them and their mission. Today’s spotlight is on the Domestic Animal Care (DAC) Team led by Suzanne Ferguson and Yasuyo Sousa.


In the event of an emergency, the island’s first responders will be overwhelmed and residents will be on their own. This is even more true for the island’s domestic animal residents. The team’s mission is to prepare so that, when a disaster strikes, systems and supplies are in place to ensure the short-term care of displaced and injured domestic animals.

Domestic Animal Care logoSpecifically, the team works to

  • help the community learn preparedness skills specific to the care of their domestic animals;
  • build relations with community members through the Map Your Neighborhood Program to support neighborhood preparation for the care of domestic animals;
  • stock disaster hubs with medical supplies, food, and other supplies for domestic animals;
  • teach the community about the network of disaster hub shelters for domestic animals; and
  • encourage citizens to join one of DAC’s teams.

Accomplishments & Objectives

The team achieved some key accomplishments in 2022:

  • Created a brochure about domestic animal care during emergencies and distributed it to local businesses.
  • Created a Zoom presentation for the community about emergency prep for domestic animals and pet first aid.
  • Developed a comprehensive Inventory list of supplies.
  • Hosted a booth at the Day of Preparedness event where they distributed brochures and recruited volunteers.
  • Recruited volunteers to shelter domestic animals during an emergency and set up a procedure for communicating with the volunteers.

For 2023 and beyond, they are looking at a broad range of tasks:

  • Volunteer recruitment.
  • Inventory purchases.
  • Community outreach and education through Zoom, MYN, the Farmer’s Market, and COBI events.
  • Developing additional outreach material.
  • Identifying and contracting for a Domestic Animal Hub Shelter on the east side of the island, close to downtown.
  • Developing procedures and forms, including protocols for opening Domestic Animal Hub Shelters during an emergency.
  • Developing a strategy for animal care and sheltering at the three Disaster Hubs in the North, Central and South parts of the island.
  • Developing a plan for emergency care for injured pets.
  • Educating the community on preparing for their pets during a disaster, including teaching residents animal first aid.
  • Developing a plan for animal/human reunification. This includes recruiting volunteers for possible fostering of household animals.
  • Working with farmers and large animal owners to establish an emergency plan.
  • Identifying resources and needs for evacuation during wildfires.

Interested in joining the Domestic Animal Care Team? Contact the Team leads here.

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