Saturday, February 26, 2011

false alarm

I awoke early this morning to the piercing sounds of the smoke detectors screaming. Bleary eyed, I jumped out of bed, my nose busily sniffing for any hints of smoke, as I sought to silence the electronic beasts. The cats who moments earlier were peacefully asleep on the bed quickly scattered in panic.

After silencing the alarms, I went downstairs to look for smoke, there was none, but I did find Theo, stretching and waking so peacefully as he does. He wasn't phased in the slightest by the alarms or the ensuing human and feline panic but rather he seemed slightly puzzled that a human would be up at that hour. Nothing seems to panic that boy!

Thankfully, it was a false alarm. I do not know what triggered the alarm but it was the second time in 6 months. I'l' need to devote some time troubleshooting the problem.

When returning to bed, Laura pointed out that if there had been a fire we would never have been able to get all the cats out. That statement stung my heart, because I knew it was true. Immediately my fear began to take hold and started imaging all sorts of terrible outcomes.

I live in an 100 year old house that would burn up in short order. Time would be extremely limited, and how do you find four terrified cats who are hunkered down all the while trying to stay alive and not panic? If you happen to find one how do you hold onto it while looking for others? What a horrible scene. Losing the house to a fire would suck but losing the cats would be horrible. The house is replaceable the cats are not.

Later this morning, Laura said, "we need a plan and we need to practice it." I agree, we need to spend some time creating a specific plan and we need to practice it many times. I can't imagine in a real fire there is much time but I also can't imagine not trying to save my precious kitties.

I will start by searching out on the internet, hoping to learn from what others have done. Do you have a plan of how to save your cats in case of a fire? If so I would love to hear about it. I have seen the "In case of fire rescue my..." window signs or the pet alert signs by PetPlan, which might be a good start but there needs to be a comprehensive plan.


  1. Ugh. I have a similar situation... 100 year old house, and I've SEEN how the cats react when the smoke alarms go off... they lose their little minds! I guess I need to think of a plan as well. I'll ask my father, a retired firefighter, if he has any suggestions, and will post them to my blog if he does.

  2. Be sure to have a cat carrier for EACH cat easily accessible. You won't get two or three panicked cats into One Carrier. You can get cardboard ones for temporary use. Know their favorite hiding spots. Buy one or 2 fire extinguishers for your home like me. Maybe they will be useless but you never know! Greg

  3. I forgot: Be sure they are microchipped and licensed so if they must be shooed out the door by the fire department and get lost, there is hope to get them back.


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