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Pet Summer Safety Tips for the 4th of July

Pet Summer Safety Tips for the 4th of July

The Fourth of July is one of the most anticipated summer events in the United States. Across the country, people come together to enjoy delicious food, awe-inspiring fireworks, and (hopefully) good weather with friends and family. Even if celebrations may be more socially distant this year, there are still some festivities taking place in many towns and cities. However, make sure you consider the happiness and safety of your pets while having a good time.

Independence Day is a fun, exciting day for us, but it can be very stressful for your animals. Bombastic fireworks displays often feel much louder and more intimidating to our furry friends. The general bustle of a party or get-together may also frighten pets and increase the risk of them getting into trouble or escaping, especially if they aren’t in a secure area.

It’s wise to consider some anxiety and calming aids for dogs before the big day. These include a range of wellness chews, oils, sprays, and other products that promote a sense of calm in your pets in potentially stressful environments. There are many similar cat calming and anxiety products available as well, as our feline friends can certainly get skittish amid the July 4th commotion, too.

While these items are a good place to start, there are several important tips you should keep in mind to ensure the safety of your pets on the Fourth of July.

Don’t Let Pets Become Escape Artists

It may be July 4th, but you don’t want your pet to get too carried away with the spirit and declare their own independence. If you’re hosting a celebration and people are regularly coming into and out of the house, there are plenty of opportunities for your dog or cat to get loose. And it can be difficult to keep a constant eye on your pets if you’re attending to other duties.

Keep your pet in a safe, secure room or crate if you’re unsure you’ll be able to devote sufficient attention to them throughout the day. There are a variety of carriers, crates, and kennels available that are designed to keep your furry companion safe and happy inside. You may also consider gates or fencing to restrict pets to a designated area. We recommend placing a few of your pet’s favorite toys or other items inside the room or crate where they’ll be staying. The familiar objects and scents may calm them down and keep them content so they’re less likely to attempt a getaway.

Update Pet ID Tags and Contact Information

If the worst-case scenario occurs and your pet gets loose during the Independence Day festivities, preparing ahead of time can increase the chances of their safe return. Make sure your pet is wearing an identification tag with their name, your home address, phone number, and any other essential contact info. We carry a large selection of dog ID tags that can be personalized with your most up-to-date details.

This is a good time to consider microchipping your pet if you haven’t already done so. Microchips greatly improve the likelihood of your pet being returned to you if they get lost. Consult with your veterinarian for more information. If you don’t wish to microchip your pet, you can still utilize the technology. Lost Paw Collar Tags and Parent Keychains utilize microchip technology without having to be implanted in your pet.

Beat the Heat (and Sun)

While it’s generally quite warm throughout most of the U.S. on July 4th, some regions are bound to be extremely hot and humid. Pets can overheat very easily in these conditions, even more so if they’re given free rein to run around the yard. If the heat and humidity are intense, try to limit your pet’s time outdoors and ensure they have easy access to shade. You should also make sure they have plenty of water available wherever they’ll be spending time, whether that’s indoors and/or outdoors.

The sun’s UV rays can be harmful to your pet as well, just as they are to us. Don’t try to apply your own sunscreen to your four-legged pal, though. The ingredients in sunscreen intended for human use may cause your pet to vomit, drool excessively, experience diarrhea, and other negative symptoms. Look for sunscreens specifically designed for pets, like My Dog Nose It Doggy Sunscreen. It’s completely natural, water-resistant, and paraben-free. The same applies to insect repellents: Only use products that are marked pet-safe.

Don’t Feed Table Scraps to Pets

Everyone loves firing up the grill on the Fourth of July, but those mouth-watering morsels aren’t so fun for your pets to gobble up. In fact, most of the foods humans eat are not safe for animal consumption. They can cause severe indigestion, diarrhea, and worse conditions. Dogs may even get pancreatitis from lapping up high-fat meat drippings. Older animals are especially sensitive to deviations from their standard diet since their digestive systems are more delicate. Make sure your pet can’t steal anyone’s meal and don’t feed them anything from your own plate.

Alcoholic beverages are also very dangerous to pets, as they can cause weakness, depression, and even a coma. To avoid any unfortunate circumstances, don’t leave these beverages unattended around your pets.

Be Aware of Common Party and Cookout Hazards

Anywhere you’re hosting a July 4th gathering can be a minefield of potential dangers for your pet. Everyone likes to congregate around the grill, and that’s no less true for your furry companions. They’re also attracted to the tempting aroma of savory barbecue, which means they can easily get into matches, lighters, and other harmful nearby objects. An excited dog may even burn themselves or knock over a lit grill.

Plastic utensils, styrofoam cups, meat trays, tin foil, and other food containers also pose a serious risk to animals. Your pets won’t make much distinction between these indigestible items and the tasty treats they smell like. Clean up quickly after your Independence Day meal and don’t leave any of these disposable items lying around.

Glow necklaces are a popular accessory for illuminating summer nights, and while putting one on your dog might make for a fun photo, it’s not a good idea. The luminescent substance that gives this plastic jewelry its characteristic glow is toxic to animals and may cause overactive drooling, gastrointestinal discomfort, and even intestinal blockage. Your pet can easily chew through a glow necklace and consume the contents, so keep them out of their reach.

Take Safety Precautions for Fireworks

Fireworks are more closely associated with the Fourth of July than perhaps anything else. Kids and adults alike look up in wonder at those beautiful multi-colored explosions in the night sky. Just make sure your pets aren’t among the spectators for the annual fireworks show. The loud, booming sounds and bright lights of fireworks can be very frightening and disorienting to pets. If you’re planning to attend a fireworks display, save yourself and your pet a lot of unnecessary stress and leave your furry buddy at home.

If you’re staying home but anticipate fireworks being audible and/or visible from inside your house, you should create a safe, comfortable space for your pet to get through the big show. Lower the blinds so your pet can’t see the bright flashes outside. You can also turn up the TV or play music to drown out the sound of the fireworks. Placing toys or other familiar, comforting items in their crate or a favorite spot is also a good way to make sure your pet feels at ease.

Some pets are more sensitive to fireworks than others and may benefit from a variety of remedies to help them calm down. These include HomeoPet Fireworks Remedy, which promotes a sense of calm in animals suffering from anxiety caused by fireworks, thunderstorms, and other loud noises. Talk to your vet to discuss whether an anti-anxiety treatment may be a good choice for your pet.

Make Pet Safety a Priority on July 4th

Following the above steps will help ensure a fun, safe Independence Day celebration for both you and your pets. The Fourth of July is hardly the only potentially hazardous occasion for our four-legged friends, so be sure to check out our other holiday safety tips for pets.

If you have any questions, feel to contact us or call 1-800-533-3377. Our friendly team of pet experts is happy to help!