As you begin to make preparations for your Fourth of July celebration, it’s important to keep your pets in mind. Taking them to a fireworks display, out by a pool or to a picnic might seem like a fun activity, but it can actually harm your pets.
Many animals cannot handle the noise of a fireworks display! There’s often nervousness in dogs. Many pets also have a difficult time with too many unknown people, especially children, and noisy activities if they are not use to those types of situations.
If you need to calm your pet down, you can use sedatives that you get from a veterinarian or Benadryl, as long as you pay attention to the dosage. It is important to consult with your veterinarian on the size of the dose that you use; it is different for every animal.
The biggest boarding times for dogs is July 4th and Christmas. So if you’re going to be out of town boarding your animals or hiring an in-hone pet sitter make sure you make plans to do so far in advance.
Try to board your pets away from a fireworks area or even out of town.
Pets who aren’t used to crowds will be anxious if they are at a large gathering. If there is a swimming pool, pay close attention to your animal. While pet drownings are rare, they happen and the water can be harmful.
Pets should not drink pool water. It’s got chemicals in it.
Some additional tips:
• Pets do not enjoy the fireworks. The noise is often too much for them.
• Do not allow anyone to feed your pet unmonitored. Too many table scrapes or the “no-no” foods can make them sick or worse.
• If you don’t board your pet, keep them inside at home and leave the TV or radio on for them, a good practice whenever you go out and leave your pet(s)home alone. It they are crate trained, keep them in their crate if you go out for the evening, if that is what they are used to.
• Don’t leave your pet in the car. Cars can get hot very quickly and put your animal in danger and more than one pet has been stolen out of cars as well.
• Never leave your pet outside, unattended. When they are frightened, an animal is able to run faster and jump higher than when they are normally just playing.
• Make sure that your pet it wearing identification tags. If your animal does get out or away, they can be returned to you promptly when found.
Animal Control officers says their biggest pick up days for animals are after thunderstorms and the Fourth of July. Both scare animals to the point that they’re seeking some sort of shelter. The safest place is inside your house.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals also has some important safety tips for your pets this holiday.
• Do not leave alcoholic drinks within reach of your pets. These can be poisonous for animals.
• Do not use any sunscreen or insect spray on your pet that isn’t specifically for animals. If they ingest these chemicals, if can cause many problems, including vomiting and diarrhea. Ingesting anything with DEET can cause neurological problems.
• Keep matches and lighter fluid out of your pet’s reach. Certain matches can potentially damage blood cells or kidney damage. Ingesting lighter fluid can cause gastrointestinal irritation and depression of the central nervous system as well as breathing problems.
• Make sure to keep your pet on its normal diet. Any change can cause severe indigestion and diarrhea. Onions, chocolate, coffee, sodas, avocadoes, grapes and raisins, too much salt, xylitol and yeast dough can be toxic to animals.
• Do not let your pets play with or wear glow jewelry. Ingestion can lead to excessive drooling and gastrointestinal irritation. Intestinal blockage can also result from swallowing the plastic.
• Keep citronella candles, insect coils and oil products out of reach. Ingestion can cause stomach irritation and possible depression of the central nervous system. Many types of these products contain toxic substances.
• Do not use fireworks around your pet. Lit fireworks can burn your animals, but even unused fireworks can be harmful due to the potentially toxic substances in them.
And make sure there is plenty of water and shade for your and all pets at outdoor events. Pets can get heatstroke, just like humans. And if you do dress them up make sure the costumes are not too restrictive, are flame retardant and that you remove them if it gets too hot.
h/t to Dr. Larry Miller of the Taylor Veterinarian Hospital
Cross-posted at Just One More Pet