Fire Safety Plans- For Your Pet
“Have an escape route and plan in place to expedite the escape of everyone, including your pets, to a location outside and to an agreed upon meeting place. One integral thing that can ensure a safe exit is having a leash and cat carrier near the exit door. Maintaining control of a pet in a stressful situation like this means everything.
During planning, you can teach your pooch that the smoke alarm going off means something significant. The noise from the alarm can be a nonverbal signal to your dog that they need to spring into action, along with everyone else, in a calm, cooperative way to exit the home safely. Implementing a specific training exercise with your dog and working with them can be part of their basic training.
After devising a clear exit plan, walk through it together, beginning with the sound of the alarm and proceeding just as you all would if there were a fire. Ideally, Hoeft adds, "Practicing the fire escape plan monthly will help kids and pets grasp the exercise with confidence." Pets are especially capable — they learn best with repetition and catch on quickly.
Integrating kids into the plan can be a pinnacle in getting them to understand the gravity of the situation, because they can be integral in ensuring that a pet is accounted for, especially if there are multiple pets. There are some pets who, by habit, sleep with a preferred child; it can be that child's mission within the plan to confirm to the adults where the pet is, or, if they are old enough to be considered able to do so, scoop up the cat and get her into a cat carrier or grab the leash near the door and accompany the dog outside.”
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