Dogs | Cats | July 15, 2015

Tips for pet fire safety – national pet fire safety day July 15th

A Jack Russell by the fireplace

Not many people think of their pet as a potential arsonist! But in truth, over 1000 fires per year are started by pets in the U.S. No, Rover isn’t home alone playing with matches and Felix isn’t hatching a diabolical plot to burn the house down. But fire dangers prevail in everyone’s homes, especially when pets are left alone in the house. Stovetops, candles and even water bowls can cause a fire.

As it’s National Pet Fire Safety Day, here are some tips to prevent catastrophe next time you leave the fur kids home alone.

  •  It’s always best if your pet can be confined either in a safe room or in a kennel while you are away. This will reduce the chances of an accidental fire, and you won’t come home to any other types of unwelcome surprises either!
  • Make sure there are no open flames within reach of any of your pets at any time. Pets are naturally curious and sometimes their curiosity can put them in danger.
  •  If you enjoy the ambience of a candle, invest in flameless candles. Cats especially are notorious for sweeping too close to a candle with their tails.
  •  If you do leave your pet alone in the house, make sure they cannot under any circumstances access stove knobs.  These can be turned on accidentally should they decide to investigate what lovely morsels might be on top of your stove. This is the number one cause of fires started by pets, so either remove knobs or get covers for them when you have to be away from the house.
  • Who would ever think a water bowl could cause a fire? But placing water for your pet in a glass bowl on your wooden sundeck on a sunny day can indeed cause one. Very much like a magnifying glass can start a piece of paper burning in short order, the sun’s rays are magnified enough through the water and the glass to be a hazard. So use a crockery or stainless steel bowl for your pet’s water.
  • Keep your pet’s collar and leash near the door in case a fire does start and your pet needs to be rescued.
  •  Put a pet alert sticker in the front window of your house so that if a fire occurs, firefighters will be alerted to your pet’s presence and be able to rescue them. You can apply for one here: https://www.aspca.org/form/free-pet-safety-pack
  •  Puppies are especially bad for chewing on exposed wires or cables, so make sure you puppy proof your home to make them inaccessible to those sharp little teeth. One errant spark is all it would take to start a fire.