Pet Fire Safety
With the recent fires going on in Southern California, we want you all to be prepared if any unexpected natural disasters happen in your neighborhood. An article by the American Veterinary Medical Association states that fires occurring in homes affect about 500,000 pets each year. Our pets’ safety is just as important as ours!
Without knowing it, our pets can be the cause of the fires if we aren’t careful when leaving them unattended. The National Fire Protection Association reports that over 750 fires are caused by animals each year. To help lower this number, we have several preventative measures to share:
• Install smoke detectors - Every house should have smoke detectors installed in their house. This will warn you and your household members if there is a fire in the house. When you hear the alarm go off, find your family members and pets, and then evacuate the home. Larger homes should have extra smoke alarms on every floor of the house.
• Be careful with candles - Some pets are going to find candles fascinating, especially cats. Please keep lit candles out of reach because there is a possible chance that their tails can catch on fire!
• Avoid electrical cords and appliances - Keep your pets away from electrical appliances, such as the microwave, stove, heaters, dryers, or toaster oven. Be sure these are out of reach! These are especially dangerous when turned on. If you know your dog is a destructive chewer, keep your pets away from electrical cords.
• Stay away from chimneys and fireplaces - It’s best to not use your fireplace when you have pets, but if you must, be sure to have a glass or metal screen to keep them away from the fire. If possible, keep the area closed away so that your pets are not able to reach it. Don’t forget to close off the outside vents as well.
• Dog identification is so important! - Always be sure your pets are wearing collars with identification tags. In any case where your dog cannot be found, having the tags could help others contact you. Be sure the tags are updated with your contact information to current your phone number and address. If your dog is found by rescuers, neighbors, or animal control, they will contact you and know who to return the dog to. Microchipping is also a must!
We never know when a natural disaster will strike, but it is always best to build an evacuation plan first.
• Fire safety kit - In any situation where you would have to evacuate your home quickly, having an emergency kit is extremely helpful. Pack food, water, leash, treats, a harness, and any medications to easily bring along with you.
• Take the crate! - To ensure your pet’s safety, allowing them to stay in the crate is a secure way to transport them. Your pet will feel safer as well.
• Know where to go next - Locate several hotels or homes you can turn to that are pet friendly. Having this contact information inside your safety kit will come in handy.
In any unfortunate situation where you’re unable to get a hold of your pet in a fire hazard, do NOT go back inside to find your pet. Let the fire fighters know, and they will try their best to retrieve your furry friend.