Keep pets safe, calm this 4th


We are in the midst of fireworks season and counting down the days to the Fourth of July. While many firework shows have been cancelled due to COVID-19, many families will opt to stay home during this time. For dog owners, this time of the year may bring on more stress than usual for their canine companions. Keeping pet’s anxiety to a minimum is a real priority during this holiday. There are a few tips to help make life a little easier for your pets once the fireworks start.

Never use fireworks around your pets. “While exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns or trauma to the face and paws of curious pets, even unused fireworks can pose a danger. Many types contain potentially toxic substances, including potassium nitrate, arsenic and other heavy metals,” the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) says.

The ASPCA also says loud, crowded firework displays are no fun for pets. The sounds can be frightening and can cause them to become disoriented. “Please resist the urge to take them to Independence Day festivities and opt instead to keep them safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered escape-proof area at home.” Understanding how sensitive a dog’s ears are, is key to helping them drown out the noise. Find a comfortable area indoors and turn on the television or some soft music can help. Be sure to close all windows, screens and doors tightly.

Exercising your dog during the day will also help with the stress levels at nights. Enough exercise to wear them out, may mean they will be too tired to stress over the noises later on in the evening. This would also be a good time to offer your pets a new toy or treats to help distract them. You don’t want to stray too far from their normal diet on this day, you don’t want to disrupt their normal digestive system. “Keeping in mind that foods such as onions, chocolate, coffee, avocado, grapes, raisins, salt and yeast dough can all be potentially toxic,” the ASPCA states.

If your dog prefers to hide when they get scared, be sure to make a safe and secure hideaway for them to get through the night. While some dogs may not have a history of fear when it comes to fireworks, this is not the time to become complacent if they are outdoors with you. Sadly, many dogs can run away if they suddenly panic. Make sure your pets identification tags are up to date, should this happen. As a last resort, you can contact your veterinarian to prescribe a sedative to help your pet get through the night.

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