July Fourth brings on the fun as you celebrate our nation’s independence with food, fireworks, and friends. As you enjoy the festivities, keep in mind the potential dangers your pet may face. To help you and your furry pal make the most of your July Fourth celebration, follow our Pierson Pet Hospital team’s safety tips.

Fireworks and pet safety

Fireworks shows are one of the biggest threats to pets during the July Fourth holiday. More pets go missing when fireworks are booming than at any other time of year, and pets who are panicked by fireworks can smash through windows, chew and claw through doors, and bolt into traffic. If your pet suffers from noise aversion (i.e., phobia) to fireworks, help reduce their fear, keeping them calm and safe. Pets with noise aversion may exhibit these signs:

  • Panting heavily
  • Drooling excessively
  • Pacing or displaying restless behavior
  • Trembling
  • Clinging to you
  • Hiding
  • Vocalizing excessively
  • Urinating or defecating in the home
  • Becoming destructive
  • Escaping
Without early intervention, noise aversion will continue to worsen and can ultimately result in your pet injuring themself or damaging your home. If you see any hint that your pet is uncomfortable with loud sounds, reduce their anxiety by following these tips:
  • Create a safe space — Providing your pet with a safe, soundproofed area goes a long way toward soothing their fear. Furnish the room with a comfortable bed, enticing treats, and entertaining toys and food puzzles, and play white noise or classical music to help your pet relax.
  • Use calming products — Soothing pheromones, compression wraps, and calming supplements can be exceptionally helpful in easing your pet’s fear, especially when paired with other calming techniques.
  • Ask for help — Many pets require extra help when facing their fear of loud noises, so don’t hesitate to schedule a behavior consultation with our Pierson Pet Hospital team, or ask us to prescribe anti-anxiety medication for your four-legged friend.

Cookouts and pet safety

As you fire up the grill and load the table with all manner of cookout classics, your pet will likely be underfoot, drooling and begging for a tasty morsel. If you want to spoil your pet with a plate of barbecue treats, serve up a pet-friendly meal of grilled chicken breast—no bones, skin, or seasoning—roasted sweet potato, and bite-sized banana pieces. Remember that many popular cookout foods are hazardous to pets, so keep the following foods out of your furry pal’s paws:

  • Grilled meat — Ribs, steaks, hamburgers, and hot dogs either have bones or a high fat level and seasoning that can wreak havoc on your pet’s digestive tract. In addition, bones can splinter, piercing your pet’s mouth or becoming lodged in their intestines, while fatty or seasoned meats can cause pancreatitis or toxicity.
  • Corn on the cob — Although corn is a safe food for pets, the cob can create a gastrointestinal (GI) obstruction.
  • Kebabs — Wooden or metal skewers loaded with meat and veggies form a tantalizing and piercingly dangerous temptation for pets. Ensure your furry pal can’t snag one.

Hot weather and pet safety

The beginning of July is typically hot and muggy here in Davison, which can spell disaster for your furry friend. Flat-faced, overweight, pediatric, and geriatric pets are more susceptible to overheating in warm, humid conditions, but any pet can rapidly succumb to heatstroke if you don’t take the proper precautions. 

If your pet will be outside with you enjoying July Fourth festivities, keep them cool and comfortable by providing the essentials such as water, shade, and ventilation. Monitor your pet closely, and bring them indoors to cool off if they begin panting or producing ropey drool, or become lethargic.

Parasites and pet safety

Summer weather brings out all manner of pests that are looking for a meal in the form of your pet. Mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, and various biting insects can make your furry pal miserable, no matter how thick their coat. In addition, these parasites can cause a host of serious, potentially life-threatening health problems such as heartworm and Lyme disease. Although you want to protect your pet from biting and stinging pests, do not spray them with insect repellent meant for people, as N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide (DEET)-containing products can cause neurologic issues. Opt for pet-friendly insect repellents, and always keep your pet current on their parasite prevention. Talk with our Pierson Pet Hospital team to determine the best options for keeping your four-legged friend free from all manner of biting pests this summer.

July Fourth should be a time of fun and celebration, not worry and stress. Our Pierson Pet Hospital team can help you and your furry pal enjoy the holiday without worrying about fireworks fears, parasite problems, and digestive issues. To schedule your pet’s Independence Day preventive care appointment, give us a call.