How to Keep Kids and Pets Safe with a Wood Burning Stove

Wood burning stoves can be a great way to add comfort and atmosphere to your home during the colder months, plus they can heat your home. However, as attractive as a stove can be, they also introduce some safety hazards, especially for homes with children and pets. 

With some simple precautions and supervision, you can ensure your wood burner doesn’t pose unnecessary risks. 

Childproofing Your Stove  

While a wood burning stove is a closed appliance, unlike an open fireplace, some extra precautions are needed to keep little ones safe because stoves get very hot when in use. In addition to the heat they generate, there is a risk of stray embers and hot ash escaping when you open the door to add more fuel, although this is not an issue if you install one of our pellet stoves, as they come with an automatic hopper that feeds pellets in at the touch of a button. 

To keep children – and pets – at a safe distance from your wood burning stone, always use a fireguard around the stove. Choose robust, firmly fixed guards that are tall enough to stop a child from climbing over. Yes, they don’t look photogenic, but a child’s safety is more important than a cute Instagram photo. 

Only let children near the stove under close supervision. Teach them the stove is hot and not to be touched. Keep toys, cushions, and other items away from the stove to eliminate tripping hazards. Do not let children load fuel into the stove if your stove doesn’t have an automatic fuel hopper. 

Make sure children’s clothing does not have loose, dangling cords that could catch fire if they are close while you add more wood.

Protecting Pets

Pets also need some special considerations around a hot stove. 

Make sure pets have beds and rest areas a safe distance from the stove and install a fire guard, even if you don’t have children. Never leave pets unattended near the hot stove – cats may be tempted to leap on to the stove because they are attracted by the heat.

The floor next to a stove can also get hot. Beware of pets with long, flowing tails, as tails and fur can easily catch fire. Do not store pet food or water bowls near the stove, as the heat can make them unsafe, especially if they are served in a metal bowl. 

Keep pets out of the room when you are loading fuel to prevent access to the stove.

Safety in Use

When you’re burning wood, continue to be vigilant. Always use a fireguard around the hot stove. Keep combustible items like clothes, blankets, and furniture away, especially at night if you leave the stove burning unattended. 

Allow ashes you remove to fully cool before disposing to prevent fires – a metal ash pan is useful for removing and storing hot ash. Get your chimney swept frequently to prevent build up and reduce fire risk. Burning logs will cause soot to accumulate faster so ensure your chimney is swept at least once a year.

Wood burning stoves UK can provide warmth and beauty safely. The key is taking steps to childproof the stove and protect curious pets, and using caution when operating your wood burner. This will allow everyone in your home to enjoy the benefits of a wood stove safely.

Contact us to learn more about a wood burning stove installation and how to choose the best wood burning stove.