The wave of red, white, and blue has began as we prepare to soon celebrate another Independence Day. While the 4th of July can be an excitement to us humans, it is a completely different experience for our companion animals. Every year, thousands of pets across the United States try to escape from the loud fireworks and commotion and find themselves in shelters the next few days. Below are some 5 tips and tricks on how to keep your furry friends safe this 4th of July.
1. Keep Your Companion Animal Inside
While we want our animals to be a part of everything we do—including that 4th of July barbecue, we cannot stress enough how important it is to leave them indoors and make sure that all of the doors are shut. Even if you are having a quiet afternoon in your backyard, your neighbors may not have the same idea. Once the fireworks start —and we all know those people who start them early when it is not even dark out yet—your companion animal will most likely become scared and try to run and hide. Making sure they are inside so they do not run off is vital.
2. Make Sure Your Companion Animal’s ID is Current
Sometimes even with keeping your animal indoors there is still a chance they may be able to get out and escape if they are scared. Make sure your companion animal is wearing a collar, some sort of identification, and if they are microchipped that your information is all up to date. While you should always update it when there are address or contact changes in your life, make it a priority to get it done before the 4th. According to multiple sources, more pets get lost during the 4th of July than any other day in the year.
3. Keep Your Companion Animal’s on Their Usual Diet
It can be tempting with family and friends all enjoying delicious food and drinks to want to give your companion animal a little taste of what the humans are eating. In addition to the loud booms of fireworks and more people around than they’re used to, the last thing your animal needs is an upset stomach on top of being scared. Be sure to inform your guests not to feed your animals people food—even with those puppy eyes!
4. Never Leave Your Companion Animal Unattended
If you know that your animal gets scared when it comes to things like thunderstorms, trains, loud cars, and more, chances are they will be just as scared of fireworks and 4th of July activities. If this is the case, make sure they feel as comfortable as possible. No one likes to be alone when they are scared and neither does your best furry friend. Skip the fireworks in the park this year and spend the evening with your best friend watching the fireworks on TV from the comfort of your own home. If you do need to be out while fireworks are happening, make sure to provide a safe and secure space for your companion animal to stay in. This may be covering their crate with their favorite blanket and allowing them to stay in there while you are gone. The most important thing is to make sure doors are locked so they cannot get out and escape while you are not there.
5. Clean Up After Yourself
Throughout the day and even the day after, stray alcoholic drinks, some scraps of food, and debris from leftover fireworks may be laying around your backyard. Before letting them outside, make sure to scan the yard and cleanup any remainders from the day that would be harmful for your animal. Alcohol and certain foods can even be toxic to them so it is extremely important that there is nothing that they can get into that could make them sick—and who wants a dirty backyard anyway?
This 4th of July and every year after, we hope that you have a happy and safe holiday while keeping your companion animal in mind. Your best bet would be to enjoy yourself and leave your animal out of the festivities. Your animals will appreciate the quiet a lot more than you’ll enjoy the noise.