Pet Safety for 4th of July

Keep Your Pet Safe on the Fourth of July

Independence Day is right around the corner. Ask any person that works in animal rescue or your local shelter, and they will tell you it is the BUSIEST time of the year. When the fireworks start to go off, pets get scared and look for any escape. Here are some helpful hints to keep your pet safe and secure:
  1. Don't take them to a fireworks show, leave them home and preferably with a person
  2. Provide a safe and secure place for them. If they are crate trained, leave them in the comfort of their crate. If you don't have a crate, an enclosed, cool room can help
  3. Keep all windows and doors closed to prevent them from escaping through them and to minimize the noise
  4. Make sure your pet has a good fitting collar with license and ID tags
  5. Make sure your pet is microchipped, and that the current contact info is up to date
  6. When letting your dog outside to use the restroom, you may need to leash them to prevent them from bolting
  7. Leave the TV/radio turned on for them to help desensitize your pet
  8. If needed, look into investing in an anxiety reducing pet wrap like a thundershirt
  9. A trip to your vet to look into anti-anxiety medication may be necessary 
  10. Be aware that in some areas, the fireworks start several days before the 4th, and may continue for several days after
  11. Keep a light on to help the pet feel secure
  12. Keep your pet secure and confined the night of the fireworks show, and do a yard sweep prior to letting them out to look for things they could eat like sticks from bottle rockets or sparklers
  13. Fireworks tend to start going off 1-2 weeks before, and a week after the 4th of July so remember to be diligent during this time

Tips for Keeping Your Pets Cool in the Summer Heat

  1. Don't leave your pets unattended in a locked car
  2. When walking your pet, try to do it in the cooler hours of the morning or evening
  3. Always have plenty of fresh water available
  4. If you go out with your pet, bring water with you
  5. If your pet is an outdoor pet, provide shade or shelter
  6. Be careful of hot asphalt or trails, do the barefoot test: Place your bare hand or foot on the surface for 5 seconds. If it is uncomfortable to you, it is too hot for your pet
  7. Don't over exercise your pet. Many pets will continue to run or play fetch long after they have overheated, they don't know their limits. Again, wait till the cooler hours to toss a ball in the yard
  8. If your pet can swim, let them take a dip in the pool, or if on a hike, choose a location that has a stream or lake to cool off your pet
Signs of Heat Exhaustion to Look For:
  1. Heavy panting
  2. Excessive drooling
  3. Lying down, frequent breaks, less responsive to commands
  4. Labored breathing
  5. Increased heart rate
  6. Lethargy
  7. Diarrhea and/or vomiting
Certain dogs are more prone to heat stroke and heat exhaustion. Puppies and seniors, brachycephalic (short nosed) breeds, over weight dogs, heavy coated dogs, and dogs with other risk factors like heart or lung disease all require more care in the heat.

Also be aware that it may be a good idea to use sunscreen on your dog. Noses, heads, and spines are all prone to burning in the sun.