Independence Day Pet Safety Tips

The Fourth of July is only days away. It’s important to think ahead in order to make sure your pet will be safe. Use these guidelines from a Farmington Hills veterinarian:

Picnic and Party Safety

Most holiday picnics or parties will contain various human foods that pets shouldn’t have. These include salty foods like chips and pretzels, avocado, onions, garlic, chocolate, candy, baked goods, grapes, and raisins. Also make sure that no party-goer slips your pet any alcoholic beverages. Alcohol affects pets quickly and dangerously, leading to serious health problems in a very short period of time.

Leave Pet Home During Fireworks Displays

Many families like to bring their dogs along to local fireworks displays, but it’s safest to reconsider this move. Dogs don’t enjoy the loud crashes and bright lights of fireworks like we do—in fact, they’re probably terrified! Avoid the risk of having your dog run away in fear by keeping him secured at home. Supply a few of his favorite toys and a comfortable pet bed.

Caution with Home Pyrotechnics

Setting off fireworks or sparklers at home? Don’t let your pet get too close, as these materials present a burn hazard and contain harmful chemicals like arsenic and potassium nitrate. Keep your pet indoors or tether them up a safe distance away until the celebrations are over.

Beware of Matches and Lighter Fluid

Carelessly leaving matches or lighter fluid around could spell disaster for your pet. Certain matches contain harmful chemicals, and lighter fluid will make your pet sick if he swallows it. It will even irritate the skin if it accidentally spills on your pet. Store these items properly and safely so your pet has no chance of contact.

Protect Against Sun and Heat

Don’t forget that it’s the middle of the summer—if your pet is going to be spending time outdoors this holiday, prepare him well with plenty of cool water, a shaded area, and a supply of pet sunscreen. Ask your Farmington Hills veterinarian to recommend a good dog or cat sunscreen, as well as the proper directions for applying it.

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