Attorney General Mark Speakman today launched a pet emergency card to prevent furry, feathered and finned friends being left home alone when their owners pass away or are seriously ill or injured.

“My labs Monty and Ralph are important members of my family. Most pet owners feel the same way about their pets. That’s why NSW Trustee & Guardian has developed the emergency card as a simple way of alerting someone there are pets at home who need care,” Mr Speakman said. “There is room on the card for owners to write their pets’ names and, importantly, the name of the person the owner nominates to care for their pets in event of an emergency.”

The law already allows pet owners to make arrangements for the ongoing care of their animal companions after life events both unexpected and inevitable. Owners can make provision for pets in their will, power of attorney and enduring guardianship documents. NSW Trustee & Guardian prepares these documents for thousands of people in NSW each year.

Mr Speakman said, “The thought of your pet outliving you may be distressing, but providing for their future care in your planning ahead documents can provide peace of mind. You can set up a trust for the maintenance or your pet or leave money to a loved one or charity, with a request to make sure your pet is looked after.”

If something happens to you while you are alive, your power of attorney and enduring guardianship documents can be used to give instructions about the care of your pet.

Retired Sydney nurse and Cat Protection Society volunteer Wendy Allan has made arrangements for her two beloved cats in her planning ahead documents.

“Like me, a lot of people live on their own and if something happens to us, where would our pets go?  It’s our responsibility to make sure they are given a lifetime of love and protection,” said Ms Allan.

The pet emergency card can be ordered on the NSW Trustee & Guardian, where information on preparing a will, power of attorney or enduring guardianship documents can also be found. NSW Trustee & Guardian can be contacted on 1300 364 103.

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