More than 500,000 household fires occur annually and over 1,000 of those are caused by curious pets. This is why there is a day devoted to National Pet Fire Safety, on July 15th every year. In observation, the team at New Haven Pet Hospital  would like to offer some important tips for your pet’s safety around fire.

Avoiding the Blaze

Our pets don’t mean to cause trouble, but accidents can and do happen, especially when pets are home alone. Here are a few essential tips for pet fire safety:

  1. Secure oven knobs and surfaces. Many pets are good at jumping up on the stove and cabinet. If your oven knobs are loose or easy to adjust, it’s possible for them to turn these, leaving gas on or the burner going. If it’s an electric stove, something on the counter could fall against it and start a blaze.
  2. Use electric candles. Switch out your traditional candles with plug-in or battery-powered lights. Open flames are easy for a pet to swat at or knock over, risking injury to their nose and whiskers, as well as the possibility of a house fire.
  3. Hide electrical cords. Gather up all the cords in your home and place them in a protective sleeve. You can also pull up any cords that aren’t being used, or arrange the cords to be off of the floor, out of a pet’s reach.
  4. Don’t use glass water bowls outside. Glass bowls in the sun can act as a reflecting device from direct sunlight to start a fire. If these sparks occur near firewood, a wood deck, or other flammable things, they can start a spark that turns devastating.
  5. Supervise pets around open fire. Always supervise your pet around bonfires and fireplaces. 
  6. Don’t leave gas grills and barbecues unattended. A boisterous pet can easily knock over a standing grill/barbecue, so keep a close eye on them (or leave them inside) while you are cooking outdoors.

In the Event of a Fire Emergency, Protect Your Pet!

This time of year is rife with fire emergencies, from wildfires to house fires. Having a pet emergency plan in place in the event you are evacuated is important to preventing your pet from being left behind or escaping.

  1. Establish a safe place to stay with your fur friend in case you have to leave your home. This could be pet-friendly lodging, a family member’s home, at a friend’s, etc.
  2. Keep leashes and a carrier or crate near the door, and keep medical records, medications, and other daily pet needs in a convenient place.
  3. Order  “pets inside” decals that can be placed on doors and windows, should emergency workers need to rescue your pet while you’re away from home.
  4. Never leave your pet alone or unattended during an emergency evacuation.
  5. Keep your pet fully vaccinated and have them microchipped, if they haven’t been already. Only accurate identification tags and current microchip information can help reunite you with your pet, should you become separated.

Questions About Pet Fire Safety?

If you would like more information about pet fire safety, please contact us. A fire emergency is something we all want to avoid, but it is critical to be fully prepared to act quickly should the unexpected happen.