Four Tips For The Fourth

Find out what you can do to make the Fourth of July a safe and fun holiday for everyone.

Posted: July 1, 2011, 3 a.m. EDT

patriotic pug
The Southeast Area Animal Control Authority suggests these helpful tips:

Leave your dog inside
While it may be tempting to bring your dog to join in the festivities, the safest place for them during the fireworks is inside the house. Even if your dog typically enjoys time outside, today is not the day. Dogs can become injured trying to dig under, squeeze through, or jump over fences. If they are tied up or wearing a leash, it can become caught or cause injury to a dog straining against it.  

A secure and escape-proof room is ideal. Be sure to furnish it with food, water, a bed, and toys. You may also want to leave on the TV or radio to help drown out the noises of parties and fireworks.

Some dogs are so overwhelmed by the noise that they may need to be sedated. If you think your pet needs to be sedated or tranquilized to handle the fireworks noise and celebrations, contact your animal care provider in advance to discuss your options.

Make sure your dog has an ID or microchip
Even the most well trained dogs can become easily frightened by loud celebrations. It is not uncommon for dogs to attempt to and sometimes succeed at running away in a panic. Making sure your dog has an identification tag or micro-chip is a great way to help ensure its safe return.

Stay Cool
If you head to the park or beach, make sure there is a shaded area where your dog can take a break from the sun. Like humans, dogs and other pets can suffer from heatstroke.

Also be sure to have plenty of water on hand. Dehydration is the No.1 concern and danger during those long summer heat waves. Make sure you have a generous amount of fresh water on hand to quench your dog’s thirst. Bring a dish and bottled water if you aren’t going to be at home.

Watch alcohol and food
Alcoholic beverages have the potential to poison pets; never leave your beverage unattended and beware of spills. If alcohol is ingested, your pet could become very intoxicated and weak, severely depressed, and could go into a coma or worse.

Also, be aware of what friends and family are sneaking to your dog under the table. While tempting on such a festive occasion, human food (bones, onions, avocado, grapes and raisins) should be off limits at all times to your dog. Some human food may be toxic or dangerous if ingested and cause stomach upset.

If you want your dog to be able to join in the BBQ fun, check out these dog friendly recipes.


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Lauren   Clovis, CA

7/4/2011 3:27:58 PM

My dog is going to watch fireworks with
.. and even if he weren't, I couldn't leave him in the house alone because he will destroy EVERYTHING.


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JL   Phoenix, AZ

7/2/2011 12:35:21 AM

Excellent tips. Too bad people have to be reminded of these things, especially when they nothing but common sense!!

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