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Pet-Friendly Security Systems

With around half of the households in the UK having pets as part of their families, it is safe to say that we are a pet-loving bunch!

Whether it is a lovable dog, a playful little cat, or a talkative bird, we know you love your pets and would do anything for them.

We firmly believe that keeping pets is therapeutic as they bring positive energy into your home. Some are even great for security purposes such as certain breeds of dogs, parrots, and geese.

However, as most pet owners already know, it can be a bit challenging to install home security systems without worrying about their beloved little pooch or feline friend triggering a false alarm.

According to statistics, cats and dogs are one of the biggest reasons for false alarms, only second to the owners themselves setting their burglar alarms off by mistake.

Imagine your security system going on full alert and blaring every time your pet decides to walk past it. Not only is that a nuisance but also might land you in trouble with the authorities.

If you have a monitoring contract that notifies the police in the event of an alarm trigger, three false alarms in a year may lead to the authorities striking you off the police register and not responding to your alarms.

Even if you have a simple bells-only alarm system installed in your house, frequent false alarms will not only scare your pets out of their wits but also irritate your neighbours.

It may also lead to alarm fatigue where such frequent false alarms may cause your neighbours and other people in the vicinity to no longer respond to the alarms and make them less likely to investigate the cause.

To deal with this issue, most pet owners either disarm their alarm, install a fake security system, or get rid of it altogether which is, of course, a very bad idea.

Luckily, pet owners do not have to resort to such extreme measures and compromise their home security to prevent false alarms.

There’s a simple solution in the form of pet-friendly security systems, and here’s everything you need to know about them:

WHAT ARE PET-FRIENDLY SECURITY SYSTEMS?

If you have pets, you will need pet-friendly security systems. Period.

Pet-friendly security systems are no different from regular security systems in the way that they look and work. What’s the difference between them, then?

The key difference that makes certain systems pet-friendly are the passive infra-red (PIR) motion sensors that they use to detect movement.

PIR sensors are the most commonly used motion sensors for home security used for detecting unauthorised entry into your property.

Once activated, PIR sensors detect the movement of body heat and constantly scan the environment for changes in thermal activity. As soon as a warm-bodied human or animal walks past them, the sensors pick up on the changes in the heat levels and trigger the system to sound an alarm.

They will either trigger a burglar alarm or initiate the CCTV cameras installed in your home to start recording. If you have a smart home security system, you will also receive notifications on your smart device of the intrusion.

While these PIR sensors are extremely effective in detecting unauthorised movements around the house, they are unable to differentiate between humans and animals.

For this reason, the alarm will get triggered and you will receive notifications whether it is a human intruder who caused it or just your pet who happened to walk past it.

This may cause unnecessary stress and disturbance among all those affected by it, only to find out that it was a false alarm triggered by your pet.

With pet-friendly PIR sensors, the systems are not susceptible to pets in that they do not get triggered by your furry friends walking around.

They provide you with all the great benefits of regular security systems with the added feature of being pet-friendly. No more worrying about your pets triggering false alarms and becoming a nuisance for everyone.

How do they work, though? Let’s find out:

HOW DO PET-FRIENDLY PIR SENSORS WORK?

Pet-friendly PIR sensors are specially designed to detect changes in body heat movement while ignoring them based on certain height and size criteria.

They ignore anything at floor level and with a weight of fewer than 35 kgs, and since most pets are of a certain weight and height, it becomes easier to use these systems without worrying about false alarms being triggered by them.

Before considering something a threat, pet-friendly PIR sensors analyse the size and shape of the object in question. If the object is below the weight limit of 35 kgs, which most house pets are, the alarm will not get triggered.

They also ignore movements at floor level, while focusing solely on movements at a certain height, such as 2 feet above the ground.

Since most pets stay on the ground, they can easily go undetected by the system. But what about human intruders who try to act smart and crawl their way inside to trick the alarm system?

Well, for such cases, the system will also take the weight of the intruder into consideration, and since a healthy human adult would rarely be 35 kgs or below, they’d be detected by the system for what they are: an intruder.

Although these systems are great choices for small pets, they might pose an issue for pets that are big or can fly or climb. So, even if your pet is small but has a habit of jumping or climbing onto things, such as the furniture in your hall, PIR motion detectors might not work for you.

You would probably need to keep such pets away from areas that have been alarmed or find a system that uses different sensors and takes into account your pet’s size and habits.

TOP FEATURES OF PET-FRIENDLY SECURITY SYSTEMS

What are security systems? They are tools and methods used to secure something via a system of interconnected components and devices.

When talking about home security systems, they refer to a network of integrated devices that work together via a control panel to provide protection against threats such as burglaries and intrusions.

A typical home security system includes a control panel, sensors and detectors, wired or wireless security cameras, and sirens or alarms.

Pet-friendly security systems are made up of the same components with the added feature of them being, of course, pet-friendly.

Here are a few top features to look for when getting a pet-friendly security system for your home:

Pet-friendly sensors

Motion sensors and detectors are must-have features for your home security system, without which it won’t be of much use.

For households with pets, you must always opt for pet-friendly motion sensors that are designed to avoid detecting pets under a certain weight and below a certain height.

However, if you have pets that are above the weight and height threshold, or who are small but love to jump around on things to reach a certain height, you may have to consider other options than PIR sensors.

There are other specialised types of motion sensors that you can install to deal with this issue. You may use door/window contact sensors that use a magnet to detect the opening of a door or window.

When activated, these systems will sound an alarm and alert you whenever the door or window is opened by someone trying to break in.

Other options include installing glass break detectors that detect the sound of glass being broken due to forced entry.

This way, if someone smashes a door or window to gain access to your property, which a lot of intruders do, the sensors would instantly pick up on the sound and trigger the alarm system.

CCTV cameras

We’ve all seen those hilarious home videos where pets go crazy when left alone in the house. They’re bound to be up to something while you’re away and are very likely to get into trouble for it afterwards.

By installing security cameras around your house, you can check to see if they’re doing okay. The systems record everything that happens in their field of view, along with alerting you in the form of push notifications sent to your phone whenever something unusual is detected.

Camera PIRs work great for pet owners since every time the sensors detect any unusual movement, the camera takes a snapshot of the view and sends it in the form of an alert.

You can instantly check on your phone whether it is of legitimate concern or just your furry friend being naughty back home. Instead of running back home or calling the authorities, you can first check using the camera’s recording and disarm the alarm then and there.

To make your security even more pet-friendly, consider a CCTV camera with two-way audio communication so that you can not only check on your precious pet visually but audibly as well.

We all know how pets are and how much they miss their owners when they’re gone. By communicating with them via a security camera, they will know that you’re there and still love them.

For outdoor pets, look for the best outdoor cameras that can withstand the weather conditions and allow you to set up custom zones for monitoring so that you don’t infringe on anyone’s privacy.

Fire alarms and smoke detectors

Hazard monitoring devices such as smoke, fire, and carbon monoxide detectors are essential to have in every home.

Having a fire and smoke detection system is an excellent idea to keep you, your property, and everyone inside it safe.

It gives an early warning of the threat and allows enough time to evacuate the premises and call the authorities before the fire gets out of control.

For maximum protection, you will want to consider getting your fire and smoke alarms monitored so that the fire and rescue services can be dispatched to your house immediately in the event of an alarm trigger.

Pets are usually the first victims of fire emergencies, especially if they are alone in the house. Therefore, if you have pets, it is your responsibility to keep them safe from such threats by having fire and smoke detectors that are monitored by a professional alarm receiving centre.

SMART HOME SECURITY SYSTEMS

Smart home security systems are becoming more popular, especially among pet owners, due to the reassurance that they provide in the form of being able to monitor what’s happening in your home in real-time.

A smart security system works with PIR sensors in the same way as a traditional home security system. The only difference is that when the PIR sensors detect any movement, instead of activating the alarm instantly, they first send you a snapshot of what’s happening through the CCTV camera connected over the internet.

This allows you to instantly check whether the alarm was triggered by an actual intruder, or just by your cat jumping on the shelf or dog stretching up to the window since both instances would set off a pet-friendly security alarm.

Once you’re sure that it was just your furry friend that caused the alarm to trigger, you can remotely disarm and re-arm the alarm using your smart device from absolutely anywhere in the world.

Additionally, smart security systems are also a great way to keep an eye on your pet while you’re out of the house. Most of them can be integrated with smoke and fire detectors as well so that you can be alerted at the earliest signs of a fire and take the necessary steps to ensure your pet’s safety.

PETS AND SECURITY

Pets are a great addition to any family. Dogs are the most popular, making up more than half of the total number of house pets. Cats are not so far behind, followed by rabbits, indoor birds, guinea pigs, hamsters, tortoises, and turtles.

While there are countless benefits of keeping pets, including lower stress levels and a better quality of life, one of the most important reasons why people keep pets in the first place is the security benefits that they provide.

Not all pets are great for security though – for instance, you can’t expect a lazy cat to even be bothered by an intruder trying to break into your home.

When it comes to dogs, though, they have been used for security purposes for years and are the first to come to mind when you think of personal or property security.

Since there are thousands of different breeds of dogs, all varying in appearance and nature, some are more suited to become security dogs than others.

The top five breeds ideal for security purposes are German Shepherd, Rottweiler, Doberman, Akita, and Rhodesian Ridgeback. Other pets best suited for security purposes include parrots, geese, and llamas.

While these animals are great at protecting your house from security threats, what about their own security?

According to reports by The Kennel Club, there were an estimated 2,355 cases of dog theft in the UK in 2020. Looking at these statistics, it is very important for you to take the necessary security measures to protect your pets from theft, harm, and danger.

Installing a pet-friendly smart security system will not only keep you and your property safe but also keep thieves and criminals away from your precious pets for the fear of getting caught.

Make sure to keep your garden secure with locked gates and 24/7 surveillance so that your pets remain safe when they roam around outside.

CONTACT CALDER SECURITY

We are professionals working in the security industry for over 40 years and our vast experience enables us to understand the various needs and requirements of different types of properties including homes with pets.

We provide a comprehensive range of security solutions that includes not just professional installation of security systems but also their monitoring, maintenance, and repair.

We are SSAIB approved installers and follow all the best practices in the industry. We do not compromise on quality and install only high-quality, state-of-the-art security equipment.

We offer various levels of monitoring via a 24-hour monitoring centre using Dualcom and BT Redcare signalling, which is the most secure alarm monitoring system and the largest supplier of intelligent alarm signalling services in the UK.

We understand the importance of having to regularly maintain security systems since the inability to do so might result in serious faults and consequent vulnerabilities.

We provide professional maintenance services and reminders for when the checks are due to help you stay compliant with the law and work fast to restore your security systems to excellent condition.

Contact us here or call us on 0800 612 9799 to talk to our security experts right away!

Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash