July 15 is National Pet Fire Safety Day

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Over half a million pets are affected each year by home fires. Learn how to prevent this from happening.

If you've ever used the excuse, "The dog ate my homework," knowing full well that it seemed farfetched, then try this one on for size: "The dog set my house on fire." That's exactly what happened to the Wardlow family of Oklahoma. As described in a recent release from the AmericanKennel Club, the couple's inquisitive pooch Lucy accidentally turned on a burner while investigatinga cake atop the stove. The story ends well for all but the cake, as firefighters—quickly notified bythe Wardlows' triggered smoke detectors—saved the dog and the home.

This scenario isn't all that rare, it turns out. With the National Fire Protection Associationestimating that nearly 1,000 fires are started by pets annually, AKC has teamed with ADT SecurityServices to promote the third annual National Pet Fire Safety Day on July 15. Their hope is to raiseawareness about potential household fire hazards as they relate to pets.

AKC spokesperson Lisa Peterson says, "Not many pet owners realize that their pet can actually be thecause of a devastating fire." In light of this, the two companies are offering a variety of tips forpet safety and fire prevention that you can pass on to the clients at your veterinary clinic. Forexample, something as commonplace as a glass water bowl can lead to a flame: if flipped over on awooden deck by a wayward leash, the empty dish can magnify the sun's rays, starting a fire. Thesimple solution: choose stainless steel or ceramic water bowls instead.

To keep your pets free from questioning by the fire marshal, brush up on more tips and suggestionsby clicking here.

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