The fifth of July is the day more pets end up in shelters than any other time of the year dogs because the Fourth of July is a hard day for our dogs and cats. While we are enjoying outdoor BBQs at parks, beaches and lakes waiting for the fireworks, our dogs and cats are in unfamiliar places or stuck at home with loud noises and tempting food smells from everywhere.
While celebrating the Fourth of July, take a few precautions to make sure your dog or cat will remain safe for the entire day and night. Let’s keep your pets safe and be on the lookout for those who might have escaped.
Keeping Pets Safe on the Fourth of July
Here are six tips to keeping your pets safe over the Fourth of July long weekend:
Give Pets a Good Play Session Early in the Day
Give your dog or cat every reason to check out later in the day when the chaos happens. Take them to the dog park, an extra long walk, or a play session with their favorite pals or toys. Burning off the excess energy helps relax animals and reduces the skittishness they might experience if they are full of pent-up energy.
Keep Dogs and Cats Inside
If you aren’t taking them with you to the park, make sure your pets are secured in your home. Don’t assume that your dog won’t dig out of the yard because he never has. A nearby boom that wasn’t expected could be enough to make some of the most home-body dogs want to flee to find shelter. Fireworks create confusion and fear, which means your dog won’t be thinking rationally.
Put a television or radio on so they have ambient nose. Heck, if your dog is like our, he’ll love a few hours of Animal Planet all to himself. Give them a spot in the house where they will be most insulated from outside noises such as a bedroom where you can close them off from running around the entire home. Use an anxiety jacket or shirt such as the ThunderShirt to help keep them feeling secure.
Make Sure They are Chipped and Registered With Updated Information
Many states require dogs and cats to be licensed with accurate and current owner information on a tag. Keep collars on your pets with licensing tags as well as owner contact information. Microchipping is required by most adoption centers across the country as well. Make sure all information is current as many owners never update details when they move.
In the event that your dog or cat manages to escape, you will have the best chance of getting your dog or cat back quickly. Contact the microchip company or visit their website to make sure all contact information is current. There are some national databases you can register with as well as long as you have your pet’s microchip number.
Keep Your Dog Away from BBQ Scraps (or Full Plates)
Fireworks are not the only thing you need to be concerned with for your pets this Fourth of July weekend. If you are having a BBQ or taking your dog to a public park or lake, keep a solid eye on what food he might have access to. Many people foods may be right up his alley in terms of taste but potentially deadly.
Chicken bones, cherry pits, garlic, onions, and grapes are among the many foods you need to keep from your dog. It’s going to be tempting for him, so get him secured in a safe spot where you can monitor what he is eating and drinking.
Give Them Access to Water and Shade
July is a hot month just about everywhere in the country. With the scorching heat, make sure your dog and cat have access to shade and lots of water if they will be outdoors. Keeping they cool and hydrated will prevent disasters.
If you are taking your dog with you somewhere, please don’t leave them in the car. In just a few minutes left in a closed car (even with the windows cracked) internal temperatures of the car can exceed 15-20 degrees of external temperatures.
Talk to Your Veterinarian About Tranquilizers
If you are really concerned about your dog or cat during the fireworks, talk to your veterinarian about tranquilizer solutions. Many veterinarians will prescribe sedatives or recommend something like Benadryl for dogs to take the edge off. Holistic vets may recommend CBD oil supplements or treats.
Always check with your veterinarian to confirm that any new over-the-counter medicine or supplement is okay to give to your pet. You’ll also want them to confirm the dosage.
Everyone Can Help
The Fourth of July is a great community day for people. It can be a nightmare of pets. We can all do our part to keep our own pets safe and secure and keep an eye open for scared and lost animals. If you see a lost dog, remember not to chase them or approach them aggressively. Try to get help to catch the lost animal and get him home sooner than later.
Let’s all do our part to keep the shelters clear this year.
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