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Fire Safety Month contains plenty for pets as well as humans

Published on 7 October 2010
Pet fire safety month
Petplan's Pet rescue Alert campaign  to help save more pets in emergencies

Pet Rescue Alert campaign to distribute pet fire safety materials for free to pet owners and fire departments.

In honor of "October is National Fire Safety Month," Petplan pet insurance and Wag'N Enterprises pet safety gear are joining forces to offer free rescue window alerts for dogs and cats. Petplan offers the only window alerts that can be customized to feature a loved pet's photo, name, and potential hiding spots to help expedite rescue. For every 100 pet rescue alerts created during the months of October and November, a pet oxygen mask kit will be donated to a U.S. fire department.

According to the National Volunteer Fire Council, an estimated 500,000 pets are affected by home fires each year. Motivated by fire-related injury claims, Petplan launched their pet rescue window alert campaign in 2008 to help save more pets in emergencies.

"Pets often hide during fires. Knowing the pet's name or where they might be located can be helpful. Pet rescue alerts need to be kept up to date for the safety of family pets and our firefighters," cautions Lt. Kevin Grogan of the Eastchester Fire Department in New York.

Locating a pet in a fire is only the first step. Saving the pet's life is another.

"Pet oxygen masks are crucial at the scene of a fire to prevent the harmful effects of smoke inhalation. The access to oxygen can mean the difference of life and death for a pet," advises Dr. Ernie Ward of Seaside Animal Care in North Carolina.

Most fire stations are not equipped with pet oxygen masks to assist animals in medical distress. Chanel, a Yorkshire terrier, barely survived smoke inhalation and carbon monoxide poisoning from a house fire in Pennsylvania. A pet insurance subscriber, Chanel's guardian was reimbursed over $1,100 for her emergency veterinary care by Petplan.

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