(KRON) — With the Fourth of July holiday fast approaching, Americans have a lot to look forward to: fireworks, food and plenty of celebrations. But pets are often not big fans of the holiday.
In fact, the Fourth of July is considered by some vets to be the most dangerous holiday for pets. Not only are furry friends often fearful of the loud fireworks traditionally set off on the Fourth, but they are more likely to consume harmful foods or other substances than on the average day.
Vets and animal shelters have offered several tips on how to best keep your pets safe this Fourth of July.
Due to fireworks and other loud noises that are common on the holiday, pets are especially prone to flee, according to Buffy Martin Tarbox, Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA Communications Manager.
“Dogs can become so scared they break through fences and gates fleeing their yards, become lost and are brought into our shelter as strays,” Tarbox said in a press release. “They arrive [to shelters] scared and often with minor injuries such as cuts on their paws.”
Make sure to keep your pets away from fireworks and other loud noises, according to PHS. While you go to watch the show, leave pets at home, close the windows and curtains and turn on a TV or radio to cover the sounds of fireworks.
Ensure that your pets are microchipped in the event that they do manage to escape. Even without a collar, this will allow vets or shelters to identify and return your pets.
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If your pet has previously had anxiety, you can discuss using a mild tranquilizer with your pet’s vet, PHS added. According to Camp Bow Wow, a doggy daycare and boarding service, you can also alleviate pet anxiety with vests, CBD treats and toys.
Exercising your dog in the morning will allow you to avoid peak crowds and festivities, according to Camp Bow Wow. They also recommended ensuring that your dogs cannot access the outside during peak firework times.
Dr. Sarah Wooten, a vet and Pumpkin Pet Insurance Veterinary Expert, warned in a press release that pet owners should make sure to limit sun exposure for their furry friends. Hot pavement can burn dogs’ paws, and the sun can leave a sunburn. Ensure that pets drink enough water, and apply dog sunscreen on them for sun safety, Wooten wrote.
If your dog will be with you at a Fourth of July barbecue, be wary of what you allow them to eat, Wooten continued. Many festive foods, such as chocolate, onions, garlic and barbequed meats, can be harmful to dogs.
Wooten added that it is important to check your pets for ticks and fleas, which are common during the summer months, and to make sure that your dog can swim if it will be near water.
By following these tips, the Fourth of July can be enjoyed by both you and your pets.