Northwest Animal Hospital

4575 North Chestnut Street
(adjacent to Wells Fargo Bank)
Colorado Springs, CO 80907

5 Tips to Promote Fire Pet Safety in Your Home

5 Tips to Promote Fire Pet Safety in Your HomeImage00032

Many people who have pets understand that they quickly become part of the family. Unfortunately, many people don’t understand the importance of fire pet safety, in fact, it is mistakenly believed that pets will simply follow us out the door if there is danger. It is far more common for a pet to have a safe place within the home and go to that place when he or she is afraid. This means that, if there is a fire, an animal is more likely to stay in the house than to leave through an open door or window. Firefighters often find family pets in a burned home, frozen in their final moments. It’s important to make sure this does not happen to your pets.

1. Use a Pet Sticker on Your Home
Veterinary offices or fire departments often offer pet stickers for a home with pets. This is a simple sticker that simply says, “Save My Pet”, with an area to fill in the number of pets, type of pet, and pet name. The main reason pets die in fires is because they are missed by firefighters who don’t know the pet exists. If a homeowner is away and a fire happens, the firefighters will look for the pet when they arrive at the scene. It’s also a good idea to list your pet’s “safe place” so the firefighters know where to look for the animal. If there is not room on the sticker for all the information, add information on a separate sticker. Typically, a family can receive as many stickers as needed for the home, especially from the animal’s veterinarian.

2. Learn How to Pet Proof a Home
Just as a child must have a safe environment, so must an animal. Make sure all open flames are extinguished before leaving. An animal can easily knock over a candle and cause a fire to spread quickly. Train the pet to sleep in one specific area, such as a pet bed, so the animal can be picked up if you must leave quickly in a fire. Watch your pet when he or she gets scared of situations, and allow him or her to hide. This will reveal the pet’s “safe place”, and it will help you find him or her in an emergency. It will also help you tell the firefighters where to look. When the family practices fire drills, include the pet. Designate a person to grab each pet, and practice with the pet at least once a month. Keep the plan consistent and practice often. Remind the responsible person to look first in the animal’s bed, then in the animal’s safe place. If possible, keep the animal’s sleeping area close to the safe place, to avoid moving through too many areas of the burning home.

3. Treat Smoke Alarms Differently
It’s always wise to change the batteries in the smoke alarm twice a year, and make sure they work once a month. However, when dealing with pets, you must treat the smoke alarm as a source of fear. While humans understand that the smoke alarm is a source of safety, it will scare animals who don’t understand its purpose. Remember to care for it, make sure it works, and understand that when it goes off, your animal will retreat to his or her safe place. You may have to look for the animal in his or her bed, then in his or her safe spot. Again, if these areas are close to each other, the task will move faster.

4. Inquire About Pet Oxygen Masks
Veterinarians and emergency personnel have realized that smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide are as deadly to pest as it is to humans, despite the animal living closer to the ground. In response, a number of organizations are providing pet owners with oxygen masks specifically for an animal’s muzzle. It’s important to ask if the emergency personnel has this option for your pet as he or she is transported to the veterinarian’s office. The provided extra oxygen is just as important to your pet as it is to you, and it increases the pet’s chances of survival. If the local emergency departments do not carry this equipment, consider raising funds to help them get the equipment. Alternatively, keep a bag with the equipment inside near your escape route to grab on the way out of the building.

5. Understand Your Pet

It goes without saying that we love our pets and we know their personalities. However, it’s important to learn what your pet will do when he or she is frightened. It’s also important to remember that your pet is an animal of instinct. If he or she is safely outside the home, there is still a chance he or she will go back inside. The safe place mentioned before is all your pet will remember, and will return to that safe place if allowed. This means that, if he or she hides in the tub during a scary thunder storm, he or she will run back into the burning house to get into the tub, despite the danger. Make sure to hold your pet tightly to avoid this situation. Understand your pet, reassure your pet, and remember that he or she can feel your fear. Your pet will be as anxious as you are, so keeping him or her safe is an extra challenge in the face of a fire.

Your Colorado Springs Veterinarian

If you are looking for the best veterinarian in Colorado Springs, look no further than the Northwest Animal Hospital & Pet Care Center. Located on 4575 North Chestnut Street, this center offers a wide variety of services for pet owners, and a stellar team of four veterinarians - Dr. John H. Suddoth, the founding veterinarian, Dr. Jessa Kocher, Dr. Elbert and Dr. Kevin Lisenbee.

Wellness Checkups and Exams

A Colorado Springs veterinarian will be happy to provide wellness exams and checkups. These checkups allow the vets to detect any potential problems before they have a chance to become serious. They also provide a baseline so that future visits will be much easier for both you and your pets.

Pet Vaccinations

Proper vaccination of your pets is necessary to protect them from a large number of diseases. Vaccinations and boosters for cats include rabies, feline distemper, calicivirus, feline herpesvirus, bordatella, and FeLV (Feline Leukemia Virus). Vaccinations and boosters for dogs include rabies 1 year and 3 year, distemper, parvovirus, CAV-1 - canine hepatitis, CAV-2 - kennel cough, bordatella, parainfluenza, Lyme disease, leptospirosis, and canine influenza.

Puppy and Kitten Care

A veterinarian in Colorado Springs would like you to bring in your kitten or puppy early for a nose-to-tail exam, and to let them get familiar with the hospital and the staff. At this early visit, a veterinarian will talk to you about nutrition, behavioral training, vaccinations, socialization, and much more.

Pet Dental Services

A Colorado Springs veterinarian would like to talk with you about the necessity of dental care for your pet. Approximately 70% of cats and 80% of dogs older than 3 have some variety of dental disease. Our staff performs complete cleanings and will discuss yellow or brown teeth, bad breath, and what can be done if your pet is having problems eating.

Parasite Prevention

A veterinarian in Colorado Springs would like to talk to you about how important it is to prevent parasites. It costs much less to prevent parasites compared to treatment costs that can be stressful and expensive.

Radiology and Surgery

At the Colorado Springs Northwest Animal Hospital, we use radiology as a diagnostic tool to be able to non-invasively look inside your pet's body to view their internal organs. If a problem is seen, we provide a number of surgical options. 

Emergency Veterinary Services

Senior Care, Hospice, and Euthanasia

Our animal hospital provides services for all stages of your pet's life. Our senior care includes creating a health plan outlining a changed diet, exercise, and guidelines to prevent common aging problems. We also offer compassionate, understanding hospice care and euthanasia when the time comes to say goodbye to your cat or dog. We try to accommodate all special requests.

Other Services

A veterinarian in Colorado Springs offers a wide variety of additional services for your pet. We offer pet boarding, doggie daycare, and pet grooming. We also offer laser therapy, pet microchipping, nutritional counseling, an on site laboratory, pain management, and veterinary walk-ins.

Contact Information

Contact a Colorado Springs veterinarian and schedule an appointment online, or call us at 719-593-8582. Our office is adjacent to Wells Fargo Bank at 4575 N. Chestnut Street in Colorado Springs, CO.

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