Four legs don’t stand in their way. Whether they share space with just one of us or an entire family, pets are very special members of our households. They depend on us for a safe and secure home, and they pay us back every day with their unconditional love.
You’d never take your four-legged best friend for granted, but what about emergencies? Do you have a good pet fire safety plan in place just in case?
Our fire damage restoration services take care of residents all across Chicago, and we want everyone under your roof to be prepared for the unexpected. As you review your home fire prevention plans and practice evacuation procedures, be sure to include pet fire safety.
How to Keep Pets Safe From House Fires
Pet fire statistics from the American Kennel Club tell a disturbing story. Each year, more than 500,000 pets are affected by house fires. Those same furry family members also start an average of 500 fires annually.
You know how important it is to keep the kids aware of fire safety. Dogs and cats need protection too, so we offer an overview of three smart pet fire safety strategies that help your family and your pets stay safe in case of a fire at home.
1. Don’t Let Pets Start Fires
How can a dog or cat set the house on fire? Pets have a great sense of smell, they’re naturally curious, and they love to run and play. Practice animal fire safety with these simple preventative tips.
• Don’t allow pet patrol in the kitchen while you’re cooking. All those wonderful aromas can tempt an agile cat or dog to investigate the stove top, and that can lead to a kitchen fire disaster.
• A tall dog can turn on the oven or stove with just a quick lift of the paw. Avoid this accident by protecting control knobs with covers or removing them when you leave the house.
• Wax candles are lovely, but battery-operated luminaries are much safer in a home with pets. Electric candles eliminate the hazard of open flames, and they rarely need replacing.
• When it’s cold outside, pets are attracted to the warmth of fireplaces and space heaters. Encourage them to safely snuggle up in their own beds away from open flames and heating elements.
• Celebrate beautiful Chicago weather with backyard barbecues, and make cookouts safe for everyone by expanding the no-kid zone to include four-legged best friends too.
2. Have an All-Inclusive Fire Response Plan
It only takes a few adjustments to make sure home fire evacuation plans protect your pets. Include the dogs and cats in your practice fire drills, and keep them safe with a little additional pet fire safety planning.
• Assign each pet to a family member who’s responsible for ensuring quick passage out of the house. Store leashes and carriers close to exits for fast, easy access.
• The noise and excitement of a fire can scare pets into their own safety zones. Confirm their hiding spots now so that you can quickly round them up during a home evacuation.
• Develop an advanced plan for sheltering the pets in case you can’t return to the house for several days. Check with pet-loving neighbors who might be willing to exchange emergency housing favors.
• Put together a dog- or cat-centric survival kit. Stock a small bag with a few cans of food and any necessary pet medications as a part of home fire evacuation supplies.