How Being Proactive Can Save Your Pet's Life
More than 1,000 fires are started by pets each year, and an estimated 500,000 pets are affected annually by residential fires. You know what to do for yourself and your family in case of fire, but do you know what to do when it comes to your pet?
- Extinguish open flames in your house. Pets like to explore and get into things they shouldn't, like playing around cooking appliances, candles, and even fireplaces. Don't leave your pet by themselves around open flames, and always extinguish any open flame before leaving your home.
- Buy flameless candles to remove the worry. Flameless candles take away the danger of your pet knocking over an open flame and starting a fire with its flameless lightbulb.
- Remove or secure stove knobs. Be sure to remove stove knobs or protect them with covers before leaving the house - a stove or cook top is the No. 1 piece of equipment involved in your pet starting a fire, as they can jump and turn the stove on without you knowing.
- Keep young pets in a crate or secured area when not at home. By keeping young pets in a crate or in a small area behind a baby gate, it keeps them away from potential fire dangers and out of harm's way.
- Bind electrical cords. Pets can easily mistake a tangle of electrical wires for a chew toy. Bind your cords together and secure them out of sight so your pet can't chew on them and possibly cause a fire from the damaged wires.
- Beware of water bowls on wooden decks. Do not leave a glass water bowl for your pet outside on a wooden deck. The sun's rays when filtered through the glass and water can heat up and ignite the wooden deck beneath it. Choose stainless steel or ceramic bowls instead.
- When you practice your escape plan, practice with your pets. Train them to come to you when you call; that way, you don't have to search for them during a real fire.
- Consider using monitored smoke detectors. Monitored smoke detectors provide an added layer of protection as they alert emergency services at the first sign of smoke, especially when you're not home. This helps with a faster response by firefighters and can be the difference between just heavy smoke in your house and a full-blown fire.
- Keep pets with collars on near entrances when not at home. If firefighters are able to enter your home safely, having your pets near the entrances will allow firefighters to find your pets easier and allow time to evacuate them safely.
- Don't endanger yourself for your pet - Get Out, Stay Out. If your pet doesn't come when called during a real fire, do not try to find them in the fire; this will endanger yourself and the firefighters who are coming to your rescue. Evacuate your house immediately and leave a door open for your pet to escape. Leaving the doors open is the best chance for your pet to escape once you've evacuated. Do not go back into your house to try and find your pet.