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July 4th: A Dog’s Worst Nightmare!

Dog with flag bandana

by Team Petmasters

Every year, the 4th of July promises hotdogs and hamburgers, sparklers and fireworks and most importantly – family and friends gathered together to celebrate America’s independence. These festivities usually include all members of the family, even the furry ones, in large groups after dark. While we cherish this time under a sky illuminated by fireworks, it is important to consider how pets feel amidst the unexpected bursts of noise and burning light. 

In a busy, loud and dark environment, it is more difficult than ever to keep track of your pet and guarantee their safety. We want to provide pet parents with a few helpful tips to keep animals protected and happy  – so everyone can enjoy this patriotic holiday!

Spend time with your pet during the day,
Before the fireworks and evening celebrations begin, spend some time with your pet during the day. Go for a walk, sit with them, take them to a lake/ocean or play fetch during a daytime party. Your pet should be included in the fun – but in daylight when you can see them clearly and avoid dangerous situations. With luck, they might be worn out by the time evening comes and want to sleep!

Leave your pet at home during the fireworks.
Pets don’t understand the sporadic bursts of noise and light that us humans love on the 4th. By leaving your pets at home, you help eliminate their potential anxiety/fear and the chance of them running away in a panic. If you are worried about leaving them frightened at home, keep the lights and TV on! It will feel more normal and hopefully drown out the noise outside.

Be careful in the heat!
A summer party in early July is often a hot and humid one. Be sure that your pet is staying hydrated and cool, especially if they’re running around outside. Avoid hot surfaces like dark pavements and tennis courts that can burn your pet’s paw pad.

Be careful about the substances/food your pet is surrounded by.
The 4th means hot grills, candles, delicious human food, alcohol, glow sticks, sparklers, etc. This a reminder to be aware of where your pet is and what it’s ingesting. Many of these things can be toxic, so keep your eyes peeled! If you’re having a party, let your guests know too so they can be vigilant.

Check your yard for debris from the fireworks.
Even after the fun, be sure to scan your backyard for any remaining waste that your pet could potentially eat. This is a precautionary measure that can save your pet’s life!

The 4th of July is a day to celebrate our nation and its people (and pets!). With these five tips, you can protect your animals and others from danger and make a pet’s most terrifying day of the year – a fun one instead!