Fourth of July is the busiest time for animal shelters, and not in a good way. Factually 7.6 million pets are lost each year with only 26% of them being returned to their owners. 35% of these lost dogs are euthanized in shelters. These are sad facts. My world would pretty much end if Leroy got lost.
So what can you do to keep your furbaby safe and comfortable during our Nation’s birthday?
- Exercise your dog throughout the day so they will be worn out by the time the fireworks start. Also, just spend some time focusing solely on your dog.
- Keep your pet at home where they feel comfortable and safe. If you use a crate, remember to put a blanket over the crate. If you know where their favorite retreat spot is, throw their favorite blanket and some toys there so they feel safe.
- Keep an eye on what your dog is ingesting. If guests slip your dog onions, chocolate, coffee, avocado, grapes or raisins it will not end well. Certain foods are toxic to your dog and can be fatal. Meat bones from steak, chicken, fish or ribs can block or cut up your dog’s insides. Also alcohol, while it might appear to be cute to share a brewsky with your buddy it can also be extremely toxic causing seizures or respiratory failure.
- Leave on the television and/or a fan to help soften the noise from the fireworks. There are a lot of channels available now specifically for dogs, including Dog TV.
- Teach your dog to swim. You wouldn’t throw a human baby in the water and expect them to swim so you can’t expect your pup to automatically know either. Spend time with them teaching them how to swim, where the steps are and think about getting a pet ladder to add to the ease of exiting the pool.
- Get your dog microchipped. While collars and ID tags can fall off, microchips are small implanted chips with all of your information. If you move, remember to update your information!
- Purchase pet sunscreen, do not use human sunscreen on dogs. There are a couple options including COOLA or Epi-Pet.
- Keep outdoor products out of reach. This includes lighter fluid, matches, citronella candles, insect coils, and glow jewelry. All of these things can cause skin irritation, bowel blockage and other things that are not fun for you or your pet.
- Keep a list of emergency numbers at the ready. A lot of Vet’s have magnets you can keep on the fridge, though if they aren’t a 24 hour emergency hospital find your closest one and add their numbers to your list.
- Come Home. Fourth of July is a fun and exciting holiday though a stressful one to your pet so make it a point to come home after the shenanigans have concluded.