September 13, 2019 at 4:26am | Barb Huntley
This summer has been full of wildfires in Alaska. You've probably seen the smoke and felt the effects of it too. Here's how you can be prepared for the next wildfire and help your community recover:

Animals - Animals are affected by smoke as much as humans are. Smoke can irritate your pet's eyes and respiratory tract. Signs your animal has been affected by the smoke include coughing, gagging, red or watery eyes, nasal discharge, trouble breathing, fatigue, or reduced appetite or thirst. If you notice any of these signs take your pet to the vet.

Your home - Purchase high-efficiency filters for your central air conditioning system or your room unit. These filters will capture fine particles from smoke.

Yourself - Spend less time outdoors and limit your physical activity when it is smoky. The air quality will be bad, making it harder to breathe. This is especially dangerous if you already suffer from lung problems.

Have an evacuation plan - Know where you will go if you need to evacuate. Have an emergency kit ready that includes food, water, and medicine to supply you and your family for up to 10 days. Bring a first aid kit and anything your pet would need to travel.

How to help - The Red Cross accepts monetary donations. This money goes towards the Red Cross providing food, shelter and emotional support for those affected by the fires. You can also donate to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation. This foundation gives money to the loved ones of firefighters who have lost their lives on duty.

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