Just as you would protect children from dangers around the home, you have to be just as cautious with animals, especially new (and untrained) puppies. Fire sources present a real hazard to small, curious pups who want to explore new areas and are unaware of the risks associated with their nosiness.
So, in honor of Fire Safety Awareness Day, please take the following prevention measures to not only protect your home, but also protect your precious pooch.
1. Use Flameless Candles
The romantic mood of a lit candle can be achieved just the same with a battery-operated candle. And, that way, you don’t have to worry about open flames in the presence of unattended pets. The same goes for lanterns.
2. Beware The Stove
If your dog is tall enough to reach the stove top, you must either section the dog off in another room of the home, or remove the stove knobs before you leave the house. According to the National Fire Protection Association, stoves and cooktops are the leading cause of fires started by pets.
3. Ditch The Outdoor Glass Bowls
On a hot day, a fire can be started simply from the reflection of the sun’s rays igniting wood beneath a glass bowl. To avoid this happening, use stainless steel or ceramic dishes on a wooden deck, which focus light in a different way.
4. Secure Fireplace and BBQ
The fireplace and BBQ are two common, widely used fire sources especially during the winter and summer respectively, so make sure pets are far away from the open flames during use – either safely enclosed in another space, or constantly watched by a dedicated helper.
5. Double-Check Your Pet Proofing
Regardless of fire safety, loose electrical wires and appliances that pose a risk should always be secured and/or removed. Even piles of paper or other rubbish could pose a fire hazard if in the wrong environment.
6. Keep Collars On and Leashes Accessible
In the event of a fire or other emergency, you’ll want to be able to grab your dog in a hurry. A collar and easily reached leash are musts for transporting your dog to safety. And if your dog gets loose or a first responder has to bust into your home to retrieve your pet, these items are absolutely necessary.
7. Provide An Escape Route
If you keep your dog in a confined space, make sure to keep them in a room with an easily accessed entry door or train them to be stay in a crate with the door open, so firefighters can find them easily. Installing a doggy door is another safe exit with the added benefit of giving your dog independence to go in and out when he needs. Pets are most likely to perish or be seriously injured in a fire when they’re locked in a kennel or room.
8. Install Monitored Smoke Detectors
Especially if you live in a fire-prone area, you may want to consider installing smoke detectors that automatically alert the fire department if they go off. That way, even if you’re not home, firefighters will be notified to respond and go to your home.
9. Post Pet Stickers in Windows
An effective way to alert emergency responders that there are pets residing within the home are to post signs or stickers like these in visible windows, and make sure all of the information including how many pets are inside, is current. Free stickers should be available at local firehouses nationwide. This simple tip will save firefighters crucial time when searching your home and locating your pets.