STEVENS COUNTY, Wash. - PETA is offering advice on how to ensure that your pets are safe in case of evacuations due to fires.
Bissel Fire continues to burn in Stevens County and evacuations are underway.
-In the event that your area is evacuated, never leave companion animals behind to fend for themselves. They aren't any better equipped to survive disasters than humans are.
-Know your destination ahead of time. Shelters for human victims often don't allow animals, but motels in the area may accept them in an emergency. Call destinations in advance, and find out which ones will accommodate you and your animals.
-Never leave animals unsupervised in a car—they can panic and try to escape or suffer from heatstroke once ambient temperatures rise above 70 degrees, even if water is provided and the windows are slightly open.
-Place small animals in secure carriers. Dogs should be leashed with harnesses, because frightening sounds and unfamiliar surroundings may make them bolt and strangle. Take water and food bowls, your animal's favorite toy or blanket, a towel, and enough food for at least one week.
-Residents in areas affected by smoke and falling ash should make sure that animals are kept indoors and avoid all outside activities, such as running with dogs. If visibility is less than 5 miles in your neighborhood, smoke has compromised the air quality and reached levels that are dangerous for everyone.