The Fourth of July can be a dangerous time for pets because of fireworks and other items you might have around, such as alcohol, matches and lighter fluid, hotdogs and hamburgers on the grill and glow jewelry, that aren't good for them.
Here are some tips to keep your four-legged friends happy, healthy and safe.
1. Don’t use fireworks around your pets.
The noise can scare them, causing them to run away or huddle under the bed in fear. They may also be curious and go near the lit fireworks, resulting in possible severe burns and injury. Keep your pets away from unused fireworks. Some fireworks can contain toxic substances, such as arsenic, potassium nitrate and other heavy metals.
2. Don't take your pet to the fireworks display.
Whether you’re setting off your own fireworks or going to a public fireworks display, keep your pets in your house. The loud, sudden noises created by the fireworks will definitely scare them. While you're gone, keep them in an isolated room at home.
To make them more comfortable, give them their crate or kennel, blankets, food and water. Close windows and doors to reduce the noise level. Turn on a fan or radio to also help reduce the noise from the loud fireworks. If your pet is really freaked out, try an anxiety jacket. It helps reduce anxiety and calms your pet.
3. Don’t leave alcoholic drinks unattended.
This might seem like a no-brainer if you have kids around, but it’s also important to keep your pets away from alcoholic beverages. Alcohol can be poisonous for dogs, and even fatal. Dogs can become weak, suffer seizures and in severe cases, die from respiratory failure.
4. Keep glow jewelry away from your pets.
If you want to dress up your pets, it’s best to avoid glow jewelry. The glow liquid isn’t highly toxic, but can still cause digestive irritation and excessive drooling if eaten. The plastic can also be dangerous for your pets, causing blockage in the intestines.
5. Keep matches and lighter fluid away from your pets.
Both are toxic for your pets. Some matches contain chlorates, which can possibly damage your pet’s blood cells. This results in breathing difficulty and in severe cases, kidney disease. Lighter fluid can irritate your pet’s skin. If your pet ingests lighter fluid, it can cause gastrointestinal and central nervous system problems.
6. Keep citronella products away from your pets.
Oils, candles and coils can all be potentially toxic for your pets. If your pets inhale citronella-based products, they can suffer severe respiratory illnesses. Ingestion can cause harm to their nervous system.
7. Don’t feed your pet table food.
This will probably be the hardest 4th of July pet safety tip to follow. It’s tempting to give your pets a bite of your hamburger or hot dog, but it’s not good for them. Going off their regular diet can cause stomach problems such as indigestion and diarrhea. If your pets are going to be out during your party, it’s best to remind your guests not to feed them.
8. Microchip and ID your pet.
Make sure your pet has a collar and ID tags in case they run away. It’s a good idea to get your pets microchipped, too.