Fourth of July Dog Safety Tips

Posted July 02 2015

Although the Fourth of July may be enjoyable for humans, it is one of the most dangerous days of the year for our patriotic pooches.

Food and Alcohol Poisoning 
Barbecues are often accompanied by many potential risks to your pooch. Common party foods to avoid giving your dog include meat bones, corn cobs, chocolate, macadamia nuts, onions, avocados, grapes, and raisins. Make sure to place trashcans out of reach and don't leave any food unattended.

Alcohol is poisonous to both dogs and cats and can lead to coma or death due to respiratory failure. Do not give or leave alcohol anywhere near your pets to avoid upheaval. 

Preventing Heat Stroke
July is one of the hottest months of the year and because dogs can only cool themselves through their mouths and paws, they are extremely susceptible to heat stroke.

If left outside during the celebration, make sure they have shade to reside in and plenty of water to drink. Check for common signs of heat stroke such as restlessness, excessive panting, vomiting. disorientation, diarrhea, and seizure. If possible, leave your pup inside the cool house with supervision. 

Dealing with Fireworks
The best way to avoid conflict is to keep your dog as far away as possible from fireworks. Lit fireworks can result in severe burns and/or trauma to a dog's paws or face. When ingested, unlit fireworks contain harmful material that can be toxic to dogs. 

Most dogs carry a great fear of fireworks due to the lack of warning. Unlike occurrences such as thunderstorms, fireworks do not come with many warning signs and therefore induce total panic in many dogs.

If you plan on attending an event centered around fireworks, your best option is to leave your pup at home. The best way to comfort your dog around fireworks is to create a safe and cozy space where they can retreat to. This may be a crate, bed, or in your arms. Giving your pooch their favorite toy or treat may also act as a good distraction. Most importantly, the best way to reduce your dog's panic is to remain calm yourself.

Runaway Dogs
Most dog runaways occur on the Fourth of July due to sheer panic. Because dogs are so unfamiliar to the sound and smell of fireworks, accompanied by loud music and parties, their natural instinct is to run.

In order to prevent an escaping pup, make sure to close gates and doors after guests enter and exit during a party. You should also make sure to have your dog properly ID'd with tags that include your phone number and home address. 

Overall, make sure to keep a sharp eye on your dog during this holiday and make their safety a priority. Happy Fourth of July beach doggies!