Everyone’s excited for Fourth of July celebrations this week. From the backyard BBQs and picnics, to parades and firework displays, it’s an exciting time filled with festive activities. Of course, all of the excitement doesn’t always pose the same sort of anticipation and fun for our beloved pets. In fact, for many pets, this can be a truly frightening time of year with all of the commotion, even potentially dangerous for pets whose owners don’t exercise caution and put their safety first.
Between the loud, booming noises and crowds of unfamiliar people, pets can easily become unsettled and even startle to the point that they attempt to run away. You even have to keep an eye out for all of those traditional celebratory human food treats you leave laying out, as your pet’s curiosity can get the best of them, and they could consume something potentially dangerous. There are many things you have to consider as you plan your July 4th celebrations to ensure that your four-legged companions stay calm, healthy, and safe.
With all of this in mind, let’s take a closer look at some safety tips you should put into action as you begin celebrating our nation’s Independence Day:
- Limit heat exposure – Too much heat exposure can be dangerous for pets, especially with these blazing temperatures. Try to limit their outdoor activity as you engage in your summertime outdoor activities, or keep them inside in the cool air. If they’re going to be spending time with you outside, make sure they have access to shade and fresh water.
- Play it safe – If you have plans to attend parties, firework displays, parades, etc., the best thing you can do for your pet is to just leave them at home where they can remain comfortable and safe. Unfamiliar places, crowds and loud fireworks can all be very frightening to pets. And, when you take them away from the familiar into these situations, you’re just putting them at risk of being spooked and running away where they could get hurt or worse.
- Crate – For added security, consider putting your pet in an escape-proof room or crate, whether you’re in your own home or at someone else’s, during the action.
- Recruit more eyes – If you have guests coming over, go ahead and ask them to help you keep an eye on your pet. This way, they’ll be mindful of your pets and help make sure that they don’t escape or get ahold of something harmful. It’s also a good idea to place notes of caution on all doors and gates to make sure that everyone remains aware there’s a pet around that could escape.
- Stay inside – If you or anyone in your neighborhood is setting off fireworks, it’s best to just leave your pets indoors during the show for their comfort and security. Don’t even try to take them outside; this could just lead to panic and an escape attempt.
- Watch out for debris – Keep dangerous objects and debris far out of reach from pets. This includes everything from food, to table scraps, to grill tools, to plastic silverware, to charcoal, to trash, sparklers, fireworks, glow sticks, etc. The last thing you want to include in your holiday festivities is a trip to the emergency room.
- Watch the open flames – If you’re grilling or having a bonfire, don’t let pets get near any open flames or grills while still in use or hot. In fact, it’s best to keep them indoors for this portion of events.
Be sure to check your yard for fireworks debris before allowing your pet back outside to play once all of the festivities wind down. Remember, even if you didn’t set fireworks off yourself, debris can still fall into your yard, and curious pets just might try to play with it or eat it. So, plan for a thorough walk through your property, and clean up.