Have you purchased your tickets for After the Ball yet? This is the annual gala for the homeless pets at the Alameda Animal Shelter.

Tickets for the event are $75 and can be purchased online at aftertheball.org, or send your checks to Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter, 1590 Fortmann Way, Alameda CA 94501. There will be a live and silent auction, lots of great food and wine, entertainment, and it's all for a great cause! For more information, call 510-337-8575.

Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter (FAAS) staff urge you to prepare yourself and your pets for the inevitable communitywide emergency (earthquake, fire, tsunami). They offer you the following tips to help you prepare:

  • Create an evacuation plan for you, your family, and your pets.

  • Talk with relatives or friends outside the Bay Area to see if you can stay with them if you need to evacuate.

  • Contact hotels and motels outside the area to find out their pet policies.

  • Develop a buddy system with your neighbors to ensure someone will take care of or evacuate your pet if you are not home or are unable to do so. Arrange for a meeting place for you and your neighbor to reunite with your pet.

  • Have a photo of yourself with your pet in case you become separated and need to prove ownership.

  • Make sure your pet has a microchip and is licensed (if it's a dog or cat) to help you get reunited.

  • Have at least two weeks of pet food, water and other necessary items in a safe place in your home.

    There is much more you can do to make sure your pet will be safe in a community emergency. For more information, visit the United Animal Nations website at www.uan.org or American Veterinary Medical Association atwww.avma.org. FAAS will also continue to offer you tips in the months ahead.

    PET OF THE WEEK: CLARA is a gorgeous gray pit bull mix that loves to take long walks. Please come take her for a walk and get to know her!

    DOG ALLEY: There are 15 available puppies and adult dogs waiting to be adopted. FIONA is a beautiful tan-and-white pit bull/hound mix of about 4 years. She is super-friendly and super-smart.

    J.J. is a Chihuahua cutie, about 2 years old and full of personality. He's loves to take walks, play and be with people.

    CAT LAIR: There are 44 available kittens and adult cats waiting to be adopted. SUNSHINE is a strikingly beautiful cream color with amazing blue eyes. Bring some sunshine into your life with this wonderful girl that's about 6 years old. ROCKY is a cute 5-month-old black-and-white kitten that is everything a kitten should be! He's playful and mischievous.

    RABBIT ROW: GEORGE and GRACIE are a beautiful black-and-white pair. DUTCH is a dwarf bunny that needs some special care. FATTY BOB is handsome young bunny.

    Mim Carlson, Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter's executive director, is filling in while Linda Treml is away.