Fourth of July Pet Safety

A fireworks displayFor many of us, the Fourth of July is the highlight of summer. The fun and festivities surrounding our Nation’s birth offer up a great opportunity to celebrate with friends and family, and it can be hard to resist leaving our pets behind on such a joyous day.

Unfortunately, the Fourth of July is one of the most stressful days of the year for our pets. Fireworks, firecrackers, Whistling Petes, crowds of people, loud music, and the general merriment of food and drink can be very overwhelming to your pet. Because of this, it is vitally important that you take proactive measures when it comes to Fourth of July pet safety to ensure that your four-legged and feathered friends are safe and feeling secure.  

Quick Tips for Fourth of July Pet Safety:

  1. Keep your pets inside, in a cool and quiet secured area within your home. Walk your dog earlier in the afternoon, before the fireworks start up, and bring your cat in for the night, even if he or she usually lives outside.
  2. Make sure your pets’ microchip information or ID tags are current. If you haven’t had your pet microchipped, we recommend doing so. Microchipping is one of the best measures you can take to insure you are reunited with a lost pet.
  3. Use a radio, TV, or fan to reduce the impact of outside explosions, pops, and cheers.
  4. Stash party food and alcohol in places your pet cannot access to prevent poisoning, and ask your well-meaning guests to refrain from feeding your pet off their plates.
  5. Never use sunblock or insect repellant that is not specifically formulated for pet use. These products may contain DEET and other chemicals that are dangerous to your pet.
  6. Pay attention to your pet’s behavior, emotional state, and whereabouts throughout the night. If he or she is acting out of sorts, take some time out to soothe your pet’s nerves.
  7. Make sure your pet has access to cool, fresh water as nervous pets can quickly become dehydrated.
  8. If you need to take your dog out to answer the call of nature, keep him or her on a leash (even in a fenced yard). Provide a cat box for kitty, and don’t let your feline out until the following day.
  9. Store all fireworks, matches, and lighter fluid where they cannot be accessed by your pet.
  10. Novelty beads and glow sticks (and necklaces, etc.) can be toxic to pets, if ingested. Avoid the temptation of putting these objects on your dog and make sure they’re cleaned up at the end of the night.
  11. Last but not least, help your pet stay calm during the event by providing a distraction, such as a Kong filled with peanut butter, or through the use of a clinically-proven Thundershirt, which can greatly reduce the level of anxiety and fear in your pet.

Protect Your Pet

Sadly, July 5th is the busiest day of the year for local animal control as they work to round up lost pets and reunite them with their owners. Don’t let your pet become a statistic – be sure your pet is microchipped and wearing his or her ID, even if you both are staying home.

Between firework displays, large crowds, and access to potentially toxic food and drink, the Fourth of July can be a difficult time for your pet. By keeping your pet indoors and providing some simple comforts, you can help ensure a safe and calm environment where your four-legged friend can find refuge from the over-excitement of the holiday.

If you have any other questions or concerns about your pet’s Fourth of July safety, or if you think your pet may need an anti-anxiety medication to get through it all, please give us a call. We’re happy to answer your questions, or schedule an appointment if needed.