If you live in an area that is affected by bush fires, you cannot help but be aware of the terrible cost that can be paid by those that the fires reach. Even if you think that the fires will not get to your property, things can escalate quickly and so it can help to have an evacuation plan in place. This is even more important when you have dogs. Dogs can get really scared when they are close to fire and this can make it more difficult to try and evacuate them quickly. You may even be faced with the situation of having to leave your dogs behind for someone else to rescue which can be an upsetting situation for you and the dogs.
The Daily Mail reported that this was often the case back in 2017 and pets are still finding themselves displaced in this year’s fire season. Living in an area that has the potential to be affected by fires means that you find yourself under a lot of stress during every fire season. However, you can relieve some of this pressure if you already have a plan in place before the fire becomes a real danger. There are several tips for making sure your dogs are safe during fire season that can be found below.
1. Do Not Wait To Evacuate Your Dogs
If there is even the remotest chance that the fire could reach your home, then you need to think about evacuating your dogs as soon as possible. You need to have a plan so that you know where your dogs will go and how you are going to get them there. The earlier you can put this plan into place, the more chance there is that everything is going to work as it should. If the fires are still some distance away when you begin the evacuation, then there is less chance that your route away from your home is going to be blocked.
You also need to know where your dogs are going to go when they are evacuated. You really need to get them as far away from the area affected by fire as possible, but it also needs to be somewhere that you would be able to travel to fairly easily. If you have friends or relatives that live a fair distance away, then you may want to ask them if they would be prepared to take your dogs in temporarily if the worst ever did happen.
2. Make Sure Every Member Of The Family Knows What The Evacuation Plan Is
When you have an evacuation plan in place, then you need to know that all members of the family know what this plan is. This means it can start to be put into action regardless of which member of the family is home at the time. It is also a good idea to have a bag packed for each of your dogs so these can be taken in a hurry if needed. Everyone in the house should know where these bags are located.
3. Place A Pet Rescue Alert Sticker In The Window
If you have a pet rescue alert sticker in the window, then the emergency services will know if there are likely to be dogs in the home. It is also a good idea to make sure that there are leashes by the front door. This means that if your dogs do have to be evacuated by a stranger, they will not have to waste time searching for these.
4. Make Sure There Is No Way The Dogs Could Accidentally Start A Fire
Animal Wellness Magazine has some helpful hints about how to keep your dogs protected from the dangers of fire within the home. One of the most common causes of fires starting in the home is candles being knocked over. If you do use candles in your home, then you need to make sure they are left burning anywhere that your dog could knock them over. They should always be extinguished before you go to bed or leave the home for any length of time. Other fire hazards around the home include having exposed wires that could be chewed by your dog and so this is something else to be aware of.
5. Test Your Smoke Alarm Regularly
Your smoke alarm should be tested on a regular basis to make sure that everyone in your home is kept safe. You should also consider getting a carbon monoxide detector if you do not already have one in your home. This also needs to be tested on a regular basis. The batteries in these alarms will not last forever and so if they are not checked often, then they may not work when you need them most.
6. Think About How You Can Help Local Shelters
By now you should have some idea about how difficult it is to put a plan in place to protect your dogs from the threat that is posed by fire. This makes it all the more clear how difficult it is for local shelters when they could potentially have hundreds of dogs to try and evacuate. When you consider that most people that work at these shelters are volunteers, the situation becomes even more complicated and they will need all the help they can get. Very often, the best thing you can do to help a local shelter is to volunteer yourself but they would also welcome and supplies for the dogs that you may be able to donate, or even a financial contribution.
Pets Best point out that it does not take a lot to start a wildfire and when this happens you sometimes don’t have the time to react quickly, especially when it comes to dealing with your pets. This is why it is so important to have a plan in place, even if there is only the slightest chance that your home could be affected by fire. The tips above are a good place to get started when you are making your own plans.