American Restoration wants to keep you and your family safe, your whole family, which for many in New Mexico, includes dogs, cats, gerbils, birds, and probably much more! Hopefully you have a plan in place to safely and quickly evacuate your family in the event of a house fire, but you may not have taken the time to consider your much loved family pets. Luckily, integrating a pet into your fire safety plan is quite easy! The pros at American Restoration have compiled a list of suggestions to help ensure the health and safety of Fido and company. Of course, secure the safety of human lives first, but plan well, and your four legged friends will thank you.

Reduce your home’s risk of fire by preparing ahead of time, fireproofing your kitchen, and taking other precautions. Winter creates special fire hazards such as Christmas lights, open flame, and space heaters, so be conscious of your use of electricity, and exercise caution with candles, fireplaces, and stove tops. Still, fire can be difficult to prevent entirely, no matter how prepared you are, so creating and discussing an evacuation plan for your family, as well as your pet, is a smart idea.

Place a sticker or decal in a prominent window of your home, alerting firefighters and first responders to the presence of a beloved pet in your home. You are often able to customize these, including the number of pets in your home, and what kind. Owners are often not present when house fires occur, so these stickers can potentially save many pet lives!

In the event of a home fire, designate one family member to care of each pet. Make sure that family member is aware of your pet’s hiding places. Usually, when a pet is in a dangerous situation, such as a fire, where smoke and heat are pervasive, they will seek out a hideaway to soothe their nerves. Knowing your pet’s preferred niches can save precious time during a fire. As you exit your home with your pet, try to have them secured on a leash or inside of a pet carrier. The panicked situation can cause an animal to bolt, perhaps never to be found again.

Having an emergency first aid kit on hand for humans is essential, but preparing one for your animal friends can smooth things over in the aftermath of disaster. Include food, veterinary paperwork, and any prescription medications.

If you are unable to locate your pet during a house fire, make sure that you and your family still get out in a timely and safe manner. After evacuating your home, leave an open access to the outdoors. A back or front door standing open can make a convenient escape for animals looking for an exit from a smoke and flame filled house.

Remember, careful planning can ensure the safety of all of your loved ones. Make sure you have working batteries in your fire detectors, and that all family members have an exit plan. Get in touch with American Restoration for any more questions about fire prevention, remediation, or disaster restoration, and keep everyone you love- no matter how many legs they have- safe and happy!