I’ll admit, when I began researching information about National Pet Fire Safety Day, I had a particular idea in mind: finding information that helps pet owners keep their pets safe from fire. What I found was different than I expected.
This article by the American Kennel Club and ADT Security Service suggests the purpose of National Pet Fire Safety Day is to raise awareness of how to prevent pets from starting fires.
Yep. You read that correctly. National Pet Fire Safety Day can be all about preventing fires started by pets.
So how might a pet start a fire? We’ve got a few ideas:
- Cats love to knock things off tables, desks, counters, and other surfaces. Imagine a cat knocking a burning candle or cigarette onto a rug.
- Dogs occasionally jump up on stoves to get food. A number dogs have knocked stove knobs into the “on” position beneath pots and pans, which have caught fire.
- Some pets chew on electrical cords, which can create a fire hazard.
- A pet can grab the cord of a clothes iron or curling iron and pull it down, igniting material on the floor — or the floor itself.
Do these hazards exist in your home? You may need to pet-fireproof your household.
- Do not leave burning candles unattended, and keep pets out of rooms where there is an open flame. Consider switching to flameless candles.
- Some stoves have removable knobs to prevent children and pets from accidentally turning on the stove or oven.
- Put cord covers over exposed wires and cables, or crate your pet so it cannot chew cords while you’re away.
- Keep pets out of rooms where heated appliances are used.
National Pet Fire Safety Day is also about protecting your pets from fires in the home:
- Check smoke detectors in the home at least every 6 months to be sure they are working. Change the batteries at those times, also.
- Affix an “Animals Inside” cling to windows or doors to alert first responders that pets inside will need rescuing.
- Keep pets carriers and leashes near the door, for a quick evacuation.
- Keep identification on your pets in case they escape or are brought to a shelter following a house fire. Consider a HomeAgain microchip — a permanent form of pet identification.
By following these tips on National Pet Fire Safety Day and every day, you and your pets can be safer at home.
Bonus: Order your free “Animals Inside” window cling from the ASPCA — just click here!