Pet Fire Safety Day: 11 Tips and Tricks on Fire-Proofing your Home
July 15th marks National Pet Fire Safety Day. Equipaws Pet Services wants to remind everyone of the importance of this holiday. Our pets are part of our family, and it’s our responsibility to look out for their safety and well-being.
Our pet sitters have seen many instances of potential hazards: cats pressing buttons on stove tops that weren’t set to lock or playing with electric cords while connected to an outlet, or dogs not afraid to jump on the counter to find hot fresh food. The statistics are startling. 40,000 pets die each year in house fires and 1,000 of them started by pets.
What can you do to prevent tragedy and save our furry family members from the flames? Here is a list of general and Miami-specific prevention tips.
- Pet Proof Your Home: Take any precaution you would if you were baby proofing your home. Cover all electrical outlets, safety lock cabinet doors, and avoid any electronic wires or machines in reach of pet paws.
- Properly Identify Pets: In case you and your pet are separated in the event of a fire have them identified with an up-to-date collar and microchip.
- Smoke Alarms: Program your smoke detector to alert you and the fire department when it is triggered, so all important parties are notified if you are not home. In addition, keep as many lights off as possible when you are not home.
- Pet Alert Window Cling: This paper hangs in the front window of your house listing all family pets. It allows others to know who is inside when rescuing from a fire. You can find them at participating Fire Stations or at ADT (http://www.adt.com/pet-safety).
- Clear Windows and Entry Way: For the rare hurricane or tropical storm Miami may encounter, many homes put up storm shutters. If a fire does occur, having window entrances closed makes it more difficult for firefighters to enter, exit and put out the flames. It may be a hassle to remove shutters after each potential storm, but will benefit in potential fire hazards. In addition, keep hallways and paths to doors clear at all times.
- Have a Safe Haven: Make sure you and your pet have somewhere to go if a fire occurs in your home. Know the hotels in the immediate area that accept pet guests. Find out which family members will take your pet in an emergency situation. Also, be informed of shelters or vets who will accept pets on short notice.
- Emergency Kit on Standby: Have a duffle bag ready with a leash, extra collar, food, bowls, bed and blankets stored in a carrier by the door. Include a first aid kit as well with vet emergency information, gauze, non-stick bandages, adhesive tape, hydrogen peroxide, tweezers and a felt strip (can be used for gentle muzzle).
- Know Their Hiding Spots: In a fearful situation (storms, fire, hurricanes, etc.) pets may go into hiding. Know where to find them in an uncomfortable emergency.
- Avoid Hot Surfaces: The Oven, Stove top, BBQ and fireplace can be inviting to any curious pet. The delicious smells of food and a cozy warm atmosphere would be deceivingly welcoming to any animal. Be mindful of their location and keep them safely contained while cooking or working with any hot surface or tools.
- Flameless Candles: An open flame anywhere in the house can lead to devastating outcomes. Switch all candles to flameless and avoid the risk.
- Glass Water Bowls: With the gorgeous weather of Miami, the sun glaring off a glass water bowl can create extreme heat. Never leave a glass bowl on a wooden surface as it can create an easy fire.
Being prepared and avoiding accidents can be the matter of life or death to your furry friends. Hopefully by implementing these tips you can peace of mind that you, your home and pet are out of harm’s way with our pet fire safety blog.
A founding member of the Equipaws family, Frankie can mostly be found working behind the scenes, helping co-create online branding, managing several social media accounts, designing brand collateral, writing copy, and managing events. She also fills in for pet sitters and dog walkers when needed in Palmetto Bay, Pinecrest, and South Miami. Her own small pack consists of Boots the Shih Tzu mix and Nutmeg the Chiweenie.