Fire Safety for Pets
Earlier this week, a Portland (Oregon) dog died in a house fire that destroyed his owner’s home while the man was away. In Abilene, Texas, a house fire killed four pets on July 4th. And last month in Kansas City, Missouri, a dog was caught on home surveillance video starting a house fire when he reached up to the stove top, activating the controls to turn on a burner under a pan with grease in it. The grease caught fire and caused major damage to the home. Fortunately, neighbors saw smoke and called the fire department. The canine culprit and the other dog in the home made it out alive.
National Pet Fire Safety Day is a time to consider ways to prevent and prepare for a fire and keep yourself and your pets alive. The best way is to prevent a fire from ever happening. Use flameless candles, cover kitchen appliance knobs, and discourage your furry friend from countertops. Cover or secure loose wires. Use a stainless or ceramic pet water bowl on your wood deck – sunlight hitting a glass bowl can start a fire.
Prepare for a fire by having an emergency plan that includes your pets. Then practice – make sure everyone knows who will grab the pet and get it outside. And get a pet alert static window decal that tells rescue personnel how many pets are in the home, and what type. You can buy them at pet supply stores, or go online. And make sure your furry friend is wearing identification, in case it escapes during the fire.
And during a fire, if you cannot find your pet right away, grab leashes and carriers and get out; then let the responders know how many animals are inside and what type.
It is estimated that 40,000 pets die in house fires every year. Smoke detectors are great to warn us of a fire, but National Pet Fire Safety Day is a good reminder that making a plan to keep your loved ones safe and protected when a fire does break out could prevent a tragedy, especially when you’re speaking of pets.