MORE than a quarter of pet owners in the south of England do not own a carbon monoxide alarm, research has revealed.

New research, from the CO Be Alarmed! campaign, has revealed that more than a quarter of pet owners in the South East could be putting their pets at risk from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning.

New analysis shows that pet owners in the south east spend on average almost £2,000 a year to keep their pets happy and healthy, yet 27 per cent either don’t have a carbon monoxide alarm or don’t know if they have one.

It also revealed that a total of 8 per cent who do own an alarm have never tested it.

Abbie Sampson, CO Be Alarmed! spokesperson, said: “Carbon monoxide is known as the ‘silent killer’ because you can’t see it, smell it or taste it – and that doesn’t just apply to us, our pets are at risk too.

“If CO is present in the home, everyone is at risk, and pets and children can be the first to show signs of CO poisoning.

"As pets are often left in confined spaces for extended periods of time, they can be particularly vulnerable.

“Carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal but there are some simple, inexpensive steps that can protect everyone in your home. Follow our simple ABC checklist – Do you have an Alarm fitted?

"Have you tested it and are the Batteries working?

"Have you had an up to date gas check? – will help keep you and your pets safe from CO poisoning.”

The new survey found that UK pet owners leave their pets at home alone for an average of three hours every day.

While 98 per cent of pet owners believe that their pets are safe at home, nearly a third worry about the wellbeing of their pet at least once a day.

The research has revealed that 36 per cent of UK pet owners have left a social outing early because they wanted to get home to their pet.

Carbon monoxide can be omitted by everyday household objects, like poorly maintained or faulty boilers or gas cookers.