July 15 is Pet Fire Safety Day. Do you know how to help your pets in the event of a house fire? Consider these pointers:
- Have an evacuation plan that includes your pets.
- Make sure your smoke detectors are working!
- Place a pet fire rescue sticker on your front door or front window to alert firefighters you have pets. The ASPCA has free stickers!
- Consider making a pet emergency kit containing first aid supplies, pet medications, and copies of your pet’s medical records and vaccination history.
- Bear in mind your pet will likely be scared and may try and hide during a fire. Be aware of your pet’s typical hiding places so you will be more likely to find them.
- When evacuating an animal, always use leashes or carriers. This is for your safety and the safety of your pet. Fearful animals may bite or scratch or even try and run away.
- If you cannot find your pet and need to exit the house, leave doors open as you leave to give your pet an exit strategy.
- It is also important to remember that pets can be the accidental source of house fires. So be sure to keep animals away from burning flames (candles, fireplaces, grills), do not allow pets (especially puppies and kittens!) to chew on electrical cords or loose wires, and lock / remove stove knobs so that animals do not inadvertently turn the stove on. Take a walk around your house and make sure it is pet proof.
~Author: Dr. C. Noureddine, DVM, MS