About 60 percent of Americans own a pet. Pets have won their place into our hearts and have become valuable members to most families. Not only do we enjoy having our pets around us, but we receive many benefits as a result of having them. Besides being our friend and companion, studies have shown that pets also provide many health benefits to us such as:
- Longer life
- Less stress
- Improved psychological well-being
- Lower blood pressure
- Lower cholesterol
- Additional exercise
- Improved heart function
- Decreased loneliness
In addition to being a valued family member, dogs are great providers of home security and have been known to guard those they love. Since pets are so very important to us, we should do everything we can to keep them safe as well. Besides providing for all of their basic needs such as food, water, and a place to sleep, we also need to consider our pets in emergency situations.
Home Security Systems
We never know when an emergency will arise, but it is always better to have a plan for our family members and our pets. Most home securityÂ companies have packages that will include the security of your pets as well. There are several options our home security company can offer us.
- Infrared sensors that distinguishes between pets immune motion and that of human intruders
- Most packages include smoke, heat, and carbon monoxide detectors that can be synchronized with your security system to notify your fire department in the event of an emergency. These notifications can also be set up to alert you on your personal cell phone or e-mail.
- Temperature sensors can be set up to alert you when temperatures go too low or too high.
- Home video surveillance systems can be set up to monitor the activity of your pets or anything else in your home while you were away. These also can be monitored on your smart phone, laptop, or tablet from anywhere in the world.
Other Ways to Keep Your Pets Safe
There are many other things that you can do to safeguard your precious pets. Some of these are general safety practices, but also consider what might happen if there was a national disaster of some type.
- Make sure that your home is always secure when you’re away.
- Place a window or door sensor on pet doors to alert you with chimes when they open or close.
- Make sure that your pet has an ID that includes your current cell phone number. Even better, you can have a microchip implanted beneath your pet’s skin that will track them wherever they are. According to Last Chance for Animals, nearly 2,000,000 pets are stolen each year that are resold to research labs, puppy mills, or dog fighting rings.
- Keep animal cages clean and free of droppings that can make them very sick over time.
- Make sure that trusted pet sitters or walkers have their own unique entry code so that you know when they come and go.
- Check references carefully for pet sitters and walkers to ensure the safety of your home and family.
- Keep your toilet seat down, because some pets have been known to drown when trying to get a drink of water.
- Put decals in your windows alerting emergency services that there are pets inside.
- Keep puppies and kittens in a safe secure area free from any kind of hazards before you leave your home.
- Don’t leave plastic bags lying around. Pets have been known to suffocate getting tangled inside a plastic bag.
- Have a plan set up with a friend, neighbor, or relative to care for your pets should there be an emergency of some kind.
- Put a pet emergency kit together which includes feeding dishes, food, water, a leash, harness, or pet carrier, along with any special toys or medications your pet may need.
- When pets are outdoors, either keep them fenced in or on some type of extended leash to prevent them from hurting someone, being hit by a car, stolen or lost. Consider the possible option of having an invisible fence that is radio controlled.
- Animals are attracted to open flames, so be sure not to leave any gas stoves, candles, or fireplaces unattended where they could become a hazard.
- Cats have a fancy for dark cozy places, especially if those places are warm. Be careful to check your washer and dryer before putting in a load. There are too many horror stories about curious felines who have met their demise in a washer or dryer.
- Stove knobs are easily turned by pets and are the number one method for fires started by pets according to the NFPA. Either cover them or remove them if they pose a threat.
There are many ways for us to assure that our pets are well taken care of. Most of these suggestions are basic common sense. Practicing many of these possible options can help guarantee that our precious pets can live happily for many years under our guidance and care.