A house fire can be one of the most devastating events that can happen to your family. While fires happen every day, most people do not realize that their beloved pets can pose a fire safety hazard. Pets and animals have a part in starting about 700 home fires per year according to the NFPA. For example, a dog in Connecticut jumped up to steal a piece of pizza off the stove. The dog bumped the stove knob and set the pizza box and the kitchen on fire! Another hungry pup in Massachusetts executed a similar strategy, this time with leftover pancakes. Dogs are not the only culprits. A cat in Orange County, CA knocked over a candle, starting a fire that caused $15,000 in damages and displaced six people. Protect your family and home with these recommendations.
Pet Fire Prevention Tips
- Keep pets away from the stove and countertop appliances. You may want to consider safety covers for the stove knobs if your pet can reach them or accidentally turn them on.
- Use battery-powered, flameless candles. If you do use traditional candles, keep them out of reach and use a hurricane glass cover that is difficult for a pet's tail to knock over. Always keep candles at least 10 inches from flammable materials such as curtains and decorations.
- Hide or cover wires if your pets are chewers. This poses a risk of electrocution for your pet and the cord can short out, sparking a fire. Retailers sell special cord protectors for this reason. You can also bundle the cords with a tie or velcro and tuck the excess behind the appliance or furniture.
- Your pet likes to lounge in front of a warm, cozy fire too. Always use a screen when the fireplace is lit. Make sure the fire is completely out before leaving or going to bed. Train pets to stay a safe distance away from it.
- Use a window cling sticker that alerts firefighters to how many and what type of pets are inside the house. You will be prepared if you are not home or you are incapacitated.
- Include pets in your family's fire escape plan. Practice taking them with you. Remember to never reenter the building if you are forced to leave your pet behind.
These few simple steps can help avoid a costly disaster. Hopefully, you'll never have to worry about a home fire. But if the unthinkable occurs, we can help. ServiceMaster Dynamic Cleaning's fire damage restoration services are available 24/7/365. We have the professional expertise, technology, and resources to clean your home after a fire. Contact us today.