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Fire Service Dog of the Year for 2022

Mebane, NC -

On October 1st, Kidde kicked off Fire Safety Month with the annual National Fire Pup Day: A special day to honor the sweet, adorable and heroic canines that support our fire departments and local communities. In honor of this year’s National Fire Pup Day, we held our 2nd Annual Fire Service Dog of the Year competition on social media. We’d like to say a big congratulations to this year’s winner: Merle from the Fort Valley Fire Department in Fort Valley, VA! 
 
As part of his winnings, Merle will receive 10 pet oxygen masks (a $1,200 value) for his local fire department and unlimited barking – er, bragging – rights!
 
“Congratulations to Merle, and the members of Fort Valley Fire Department,” said Maura Zingsheim, Fire Safety Educator at Kidde. “At Kidde, it’s our mission to protect every moment, for everyone… and that includes our four-legged friends! We want to ensure our first responders are equipped with the right products, resources and tools to help save the lives of family pets too.” 
 
As a committed pet fire safety advocate, Kidde would like to offer a few helpful strategies: 
  • Safety Window Clings: In an emergency, first responders need to be able to quickly assess the number of pets in a home. Consider attaching a non-adhesive decal to a window near your front door to let rescuers know how many animals are inside.
  • Fire Escape Practice: Pets should always be included in a family's evacuation plan. Stay aware of their typical hiding spots, or locations where they often nap, in case you must evacuate quickly. When you’re not home, keep pets in areas near entrances where firefighters can easily find them.
  • Train Pets How to Respond: Pets already prone to anxiety when a smoke alarm sounds may become even more anxious if one goes off when their owners aren’t home. Through its collaboration with celebrity pet trainer Sara Carson, Kidde shares some easy steps to train your pet to respond positively to the sound of a smoke or carbon monoxide (CO) alarm.
  • Smoke Alarm Maintenance: Smoke alarms must be replaced every 7-10 years. In addition to testing alarms once a week, check the manufacturing date on your smoke alarms to make sure they’re under 10 years of age. If they’re older than that, it’s time to replace them.
 
Merle the Dog
Winner: Merle from Fort Valley Fire Station in Fort Valley, VA 
 

About Kidde

Kidde, a leading manufacturer of residential smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms, fire extinguishers, and safety accessories, has been keeping the world a safer place for over 100 years. Kidde produced the first integrated smoke detection system a century ago and continues its legacy today by delivering advanced fire-safety technology. Kidde is a part of Carrier Global Corporation, a leading global provider of innovative HVAC, refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies. 
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