For us humans, July 4th is a time for celebration with family, friends, cook outs and fireworks. For our four legged family members, July 4th is one of the most stressful times of the year. More pets run away on this day than any other day of the year.  While we love the sudden booms, loud noises, flashes, and burning smells, the typical fourth of July celebrations can be overwhelming to our dogs

The fourth of July is one of our busiest days in the pet ER. Here are some tips to help keep your pets calm and safe, making the holiday easier for both of you.

  1. If possible, arrange to have your dog in a place where there won’t be loud fireworks displays — a friend’s or relative’s home or a doggie day care with which your dog is familiar. If it’s an unfamiliar place for your dog, take him over there a few times in the days before the holiday so that it won’t be a surprise when you take him there on the Fourth.
  2. If you cannot take your dog to a place away from fireworks, then have a travel kennel at home for them to feel safe in. Putting them in the basement with the radio or TV playing can help mask the noise of fireworks.
  3. If you do find it necessary to use medication to calm your dog, remember that you must give the mediation at least 1 hour prior to the fireworks starting.  The dog must be in a calm state first for the medication to work, if the dog is already at an anxiety level of 8 or 9, then their mental state will overrule the medication.  This is the same principle when using a thundershirt which is designed to slow the dog’s breathing. If the dog is already breathing heavy the shirt will not work.
  4. Give your dog plenty of exercise earlier in the day. Make sure to take your dog our between 7-8 pm then put them in a quiet place away from fireworks. Keep the drapes and windows closed to prevent your dog from escaping.
  5. Make sure all your dogs are wearing ID tags with a properly fitting collar. In case, they do get away they will be able to make it back home.
  6. Keep all fireworks out of the reach of your dog. Some dogs love to chew or eat on anything.

Hopefully these tips will help keep you from visiting the pet ER. If you find you need help, please call Urgent Pet Care