AKC Canine Health Foundation Urging Dog Owners to Take Time for Fire Prevention July 15

RALEIGH, N.C. -- The AKC Canine Health Foundation, a nonprofit organization celebrating 20 years of preventing, treating, and curing diseases in all dogs, is urging dog owners to take a hard look at their home environment July 15 to help prevent fire-related tragedies. The sixth annual National Pet Fire Safety Day helps shine the spotlight on important issues like dog-proofing the home to avoid pets inadvertently starting fires; checking smoke detectors; and affixing a pet alert window cling to alert firefighters to the presence of four-legged family members.

“Taking one day out of the year to protect your dogs from the unexpected can pay off down the road, and can also be a family activity that helps reinforce overall fire safety preparedness,” said Susan Lilly, CEO of the Canine Health Foundation.

For example, making sure collars and leashes are stored near exits also helps teach children where to go to escape a fire, Lilly explained.

“Kids practicing evacuation techniques with their dogs is a great way to reinforce what to do in an emergency,” she said.

The American Kennel Club and ADT Security Services launched the inaugural National Pet Fire Safety Day in 2009 in an effort to help reduce the estimated 500,000 pets affected by home fires each year.

Tips and information on keeping dogs safe from fires are available on the Canine Health Foundation website at www.akcchf.org/firesafety.

The online information on pet fire safety is one of many outreach efforts on behalf of the Canine Health Foundation to provide unbiased, professional guidance for a new breed of dog owner. The organization regularly hosts free educational webinars for dog lovers and publishes educational information on its website, www.akcchf.org.

The AKC Canine Health Foundation bridges the gap between veterinary research and dog lovers by raising funds to support over $1 million per year in new canine health research grants regardless of breed. This research has led to numerous breakthroughs in disease prevention and treatment in the areas of behavior, epilepsy, cancer, cardiology, musculoskeletal injuries and disease, and bloat, among others. Currently, over 100 active research projects are being supported by funds raised by the Foundation from corporate donors, dog clubs, and dog lovers throughout the U.S.

Recently, the Foundation announced it had received the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, America's largest and most-utilized independent evaluator of charities, for the third straight year. The rating reflects the Foundation’s sound fiscal management and commitment to accountability and transparency, and indicates that the organization adheres to good governance and other best practices that minimize the chance of unethical activities and consistently executes its mission in a fiscally responsible way.

Donations to support the Foundation’s canine health research can be made by calling 1-888-682-9696 or visiting the AKC Canine Health Foundation website www.akcchf.org/donate.

About the AKC Canine Health Foundation
The Raleigh, NC-based AKC Canine Health Foundation is in its 20th year of leveraging the power of science and research to improve the lives of dogs and their people. The Foundation is dedicated to preventing, treating, and curing diseases impacting all dogs while providing unbiased, professional information and resources for a new breed of dog owner. Take action because you care; find out more online at www.akcchf.org.