15 July is Pet Fire Safety Day, and although everyone wants to protect every member of their family from the dangers of fire, some of us are not aware of how to do it.
If you own a pet, it is essential to consider, practice, and minimize emergency-related incidents such as fires that can occur at any time, whether you are home or away.
Even though most people are familiar with how to protect themselves and their human family members from these emergencies, the same may not be true of their pets. Therefore, this article will assess some of the standard fire safety measures that pet owners should practice in safeguarding their pets from fire-based emergencies.
Pet-proof your home before you go out
Here are a few tips to make your home safer:
- Remove the knobs from your gas stove.
- Do not use glass bowls for water that become magnifying glasses in the sun.
- Never leave candles burning while you’re away.
- Check your home for ways a pet could start a fire and fix it.
- Put a pet sticker on or near the door.
- Keep pets close to the entrance while away.
- Keep their leash or carrier by the door in case fire personnel has to take them out.
If you think something might present a fire hazard for your pet, fix it right away.
Ensure you have a working pet door if practical
Although they’re not always practical, pet doors can be the difference between safeguarding your pets or subjecting them to unnecessary hazards. Some people call these doggy doors, but that is rather narrow-minded thinking as cats, and other pets can use these doors as well.
The placement is crucial as it should lead to a confined area so your pets are protected from petnapping but can also patrol that area around your house if necessary.
Plus, your pet's leavings will be confined to your property, and they won’t stray to do their business in a neighbor’s yard. That will help you with community relations.
I chose this video where Kevin O’Connor helps Tom Silva install a door for a large animal because I like This Old House, and installing a door for a small animal is so much easier you can do it in about ten minutes.
How to Install a Dog Door for a Large Dog | This Old House
Remember, while you’re making it safer for your pets to go in and out, you must ensure you keep wild animals and two-legged animals (burglars) out as well. You should consider putting the opening where it will lead your pet into a fenced area, for the reasons stated above.
Have an emergency plan in place & practice it with your pets
An emergency plan can be anything that keeps your pets aware of the steps to take when a fire breaks out. Such plans are the common emergency drills that are held by companies, schools, and security organizations. Remember doing periodic fire drills at school? Keeping that in mind should assist you with putting together your family's plan.
When practicing these drills with your family, always ensure your pets are involved. This practice will give them an idea of what is required of them when a fire breaks out. National Pet Fire Safety Day is an excellent day to get started with family fire drills.
The drill should include putting your pets into their carrier, so they get used to it. If your pets aren’t used to the carrier, they may run away when you need their cooperation in an emergency.
Tag or chip your pets with ID tags
A pet ID tag is essential, more so in instances where a fire breaks out and your pets run for safety. Based on where you are located or how well you know your pets' hiding places, finding your pets in an emergency may be challenging.
With a pet ID tag, any stranger who finds your pet can get in touch with you. Therefore, be sure to include the pet's name, your name, and contact information on the ID tag.
Microchipping is another method of safeguarding your pets. This process involves the implantation of a microchip around your pet's shoulder. This application is inexpensive, and most veterinarians do it.
If your pet gets lost, when they are located, a scanner is used to read the chip’s contact information to notify you.
Take your pets with you or board them when possible
When you evacuate after a fire breaks out, always ensure that you bring your pets along. It is crucial to have a pet shelter in mind as a temporary shelter if the fire damage is extensive.
If you never use a kennel or boarding home for your pets, this could add more stress to the thoughts already running through your head about the damage from the fire.
However, bear in mind that not all animal shelters will take your pets full time. Therefore, you must conduct research and contact shelters ready, able, and willing to take your pets when an emergency happens.
If you do not have an established pet kennel in Bangor, Maine, consider one from my article: Finding a boarding kennel for your pets in Bangor, Maine.
Install smoke detectors
Smoke detectors are common in most households, but your pets should be familiar with the sound and know how to escape if the alarm sounds. Making the alarm sound to initiate a fire drill for your family will familiarize everyone with the noise and procedures to protect themselves.
Likewise, connecting the alarm to a monitoring service could save your pet’s life.
Consider having a central meeting area outside so that you will know if everyone, including your pets are out of the house in case of fire.
Thursday, 15 July, Pet Fire Safety Awareness Day, is an excellent day to start practicing your plan if you have not created one already.
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