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Pet safety tips for the Fourth of July weekend

Patriotic-Pets--4th-of-July-DogsAs you begin to make preparations for your Fourth of July celebration, it’s important to keep your pets in mind. Taking them to a fireworks display, out by a pool or to a picnic might seem like a fun activity, but it can actually harm your pets.

Many animals cannot handle the noise of a fireworks display! There’s often nervousness in dogs.  Many pets also have a difficult time with too many unknown people, especially children, and noisy activities if they are not use to those types of situations.

If you need to calm your pet down, you can use sedatives that you get from a veterinarian or Benadryl, as long as you pay attention to the dosage. It is important to consult with your veterinarian on the size of the dose that you use; it is different for every animal.

The biggest boarding times for dogs is July 4th and Christmas. So if you’re going to be out of town boarding your animals or hiring an in-hone pet sitter make sure you make plans to do so far in advance.

Try to board your pets away from a fireworks area or even out of town.

Pets who aren’t used to crowds will be anxious if they are at a large gathering. If there is a swimming pool, pay close attention to your animal. While pet drownings are rare, they happen and the water can be harmful.

Pets should not drink pool water. It’s got chemicals in it.

Some additional tips:

• Pets do not enjoy the fireworks. The noise is often too much for them.

• Do not allow anyone to feed your pet unmonitored. Too many table scrapes or the “no-no” foods can make them sick or worse.

• If you don’t board your pet, keep them inside at home and leave the TV or radio on for them, a good practice whenever you go out and leave your pet(s)home alone. It they are crate trained, keep them in their crate if you go out for the evening, if that is what they are used to.

• Don’t leave your pet in the car. Cars can get hot very quickly and put your animal in danger and more than one pet has been stollen out of cars as well.

• Never leave your pet outside, unattended. When they are frightened, an animal is able to run faster and jump higher than when they are normally just playing.

• Make sure that your pet it wearing identification tags. If your animal does get out or away, they can be returned to you promptly when found.

Animal Control officers says their biggest pick up days for animals are after thunderstorms and the Fourth of July.  Both scare animals to the point that they’re seeking some sort of shelter. The safest place is inside your house.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals also has some important safety tips for your pets this holiday.

• Do not leave alcoholic drinks within reach of your pets. These can be poisonous for animals.

• Do not use any sunscreen or insect spray on your pet that isn’t specifically for animals. If they ingest these chemicals, if can cause many problems, including vomiting and diarrhea. Ingesting anything with DEET can cause neurological problems.

• Keep matches and lighter fluid out of your pet’s reach. Certain matches can potentially damage blood cells or kidney damage. Ingesting lighter fluid can cause gastrointestinal irritation and depression of the central nervous system as well as breathing problems.

• Make sure to keep your pet on its normal diet. Any change can cause severe indigestion and diarrhea. Onions, chocolate, coffee, sodas, avocadoes, grapes and raisins, too much salt, xylitol and yeast dough can be toxic to animals.

• Do not let your pets play with or wear glow jewelry. Ingestion can lead to excessive drooling and gastrointestinal irritation. Intestinal blockage can also result from swallowing the plastic.

• Keep citronella candles, insect coils and oil products out of reach. Ingestion can cause stomach irritation and possible depression of the central nervous system. Many types of these products contain toxic substances.

• Do not use fireworks around your pet. Lit fireworks can burn your animals, but even unused fireworks can be harmful due to the potentially toxic substances in them.

And make sure there is plenty of water and shade for your and all pets at outdoor events. And if you do dress them up make sure the costumes are not too restrictive, are flame retardant and that you remove them if it gets too hot.

h/t to Dr. Larry Miller of the Taylor Veterinarian Hospital

July 2, 2011 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Dogs, Holidays With Pets, Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Events, Pet Friendship and Love, Pet Health, Pet Nutrition, Pets, responsible pet ownership, Stop Animal Cruelty | , , | 6 Comments

Holiday Weekend Pet Safety

Memorial Day weekend is upon us. We have our annual Blues Festival here in Silver City and it’s a fun weekend of music, dancing and maybe even a beer or two. Many of you will be having family and friends over to celebrate and maybe a little BBQ action is in store. Others may be headed for the beach or the river to escape the heat. Whatever your plans, don’t forget the pets. Holidays can be stressful, and in some cases dangerous times for pets.

Memorial Day is right up there with the Fourth of July when it comes to pets getting lost. Be very careful with cats especially when family and friends are coming and going a leaving doors and windows open.

Here are a few more tips to help keep your cat and dog safe:

1. Talk to the kids, and in some cases, the adults. Let them know how to approach and play with the cat or dog. Some cats don’t take kindly to being picked up by a little stranger, let alone grabbed by the tail. Same goes for the dog. You’ll need less antibiotic ointment and fewer band aids if you lay a few ground rules.

2. Leashes, collars,tags and chips: Make sure the cat and dog have their collars on and discuss the rules for taking them outside or for walks. If you use tags to identify your dog or cat make sure the info is up to date. If you micro chip your pet make sure the info in his database is up to date, too.

3. Windows and doors: With all the family and guests coming and going escapes can be a real issue. Stressed dogs and cats may seize any opportunity to bolt. Keep a watchful eye and see number 2 above.

4. Food: Try to keep the pets on their normal diet. Hold the rich food, desserts, chocolate and raisins. They won’t feel left out if you deny them their own rack of ribs. If each one of your guests gives them an itty, bitty treat it can add up fast. It’s enough to clean up the kitchen after a Memorial day cookout let alone cleaning up after a sick dog or cat.

5. Give them some attention: Your pet is going to be dealing with a lot so don’t forget to take them for walks and give them plenty of pats and hugs. They will need it. You probably will, too. Your pet, unlike your mom, sibling or in-law, probably won’t look askance as you grab that second piece of pie or don’t grab that second piece of pie, for that matter.

6. Finally, if the lake, river or beach is on the agenda, use some common sense. Many dogs love the water and unless they are good, experienced swimmers, they can get into trouble just like the kids or aunt Milly. It’s ok for them to jump in a take a swim, but don’t try for an Olympic distance record when you are heaving the stick.

Some dogs may be totally inexperienced around the water. I’ll never forget the first time I took Darcie in the canoe. She got up on the seat and calmly stepped off right into the river. She had no idea that the water surface would give. It was a shocking revelation for her.

Miles is a very strong swimmer like most Labs, but we take him swimming all the time and we know his limits even if he does not. If your dog is not familiar with the water, don’t throw the ball or stick out into the current or across the river. Don’t throw it too far into the lake either. They can easily become exhausted if they are not used to swimming for exercise and they will drown if you are not careful.

Even pet insurance can’t revive a dog or pull one from the current of a rushing river.  One final word of caution; unless you are a strong swimmer yourself, avoid the temptation to go in after a struggling pet. I know this is hard advice, but every year someone drowns trying to save a pet that should not be in trouble in the first place. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of heroics in this situation.

h/t to PurinaCare.com Blog

May 29, 2011 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Dogs, Holidays With Pets, If Animlas Could Talk..., Just One More Pet, Man's Best Friend, Pet Blog, Pet Friendship and Love, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fourth of July Festivities: Should You Bring Your Pet?

Clemente - ASPCA Rescue As the country dons its red, white and blue to celebrate Independence Day, nothing says patriotism like a good old-fashioned barbecue with a side of fireworks. But beware pet parents, what’s fun for people can be a downright drag for our furry friends.

The ASPCA recommends keeping your pooch indoors as much as possible during backyard parties and Fourth of July festivities, even if he or she is a pro picnicker. From toxic food and beverages to raucous guests and fireworks, the holiday weekend is a minefield of potential pet problems.

“Even the most timid dog can leap a six-foot fence if he’s spooked by loud noises,” says Dr. Pamela Reid, Vice President of the ASPCA Animal Behavior Center. If your dog shows signs of distress from fireworks or boisterous revelers, Dr. Reid suggests giving him a Kong toy stuffed with peanut butter. “The consistent licking should calm his nerves,” she says.

The ASPCA and City of Mission Viejo offer some expert advice to keep your pet singing, “Oh Say Can You See,” all the way to the fifth and beyond:

  • Keep your pet on the wagon. Since alcohol is potentially poisonous to pets, place all wine, beer and spirits well out of paws’ way.
  • Keep your pets on their normal diet; generally avoiding scraps from the grill (unless you normally cook for your pet(s). Essentially stick with your pet’s normal diet—any change, even for a day, can result in stomach upset.  But every pet is different, so a few scraps or goodies in moderation are usually fine. Certain foods like onions, avocado, chocolate, coffee, yeast dough, grapes and raisins are especially toxic to pets. A high volume of salt, often found in large amounts in pre-packaged and picnic type foods is also bad.
  • Avoid lathering your pet with any insect repellent or sunscreen not intended for the four-legged kind. Ingestion can result in drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst and lethargy.
  • Stay fire-smart. Keep your pet away from fireworks, matches, citronella candles and lighter fluid, which if eaten can irritate the stomach, lungs and central nervous system.
  • Do not put glow jewelry on your pets, or allow them to play with it. While the luminescent substance contained in these products is not highly toxic, excessive drooling and gastrointestinal irritation could still result from ingestions, and intestinal blockage could occur from swallowing large pieces of the plastic containers.
  • Be cool near the pool. Don’t leave pets unsupervised around a pool or lake—not all dogs are expert swimmers! Also, pools aren’t large water bowls—they contain chlorine and other toxic chemicals that can cause stomach problems.
  • Loud, crowded fireworks displays are no fun for pets, so please resist the urge to take them to Independence Day festivities. Instead, keep your little guys safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area at home.

As always, if you suspect your pet has ingested something poisonous from the picnic table, please contact your vet or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435. And be sure to check out our more complete list of holiday pet care tips for a safe and happy Fourth!

Source: ASPCA.org/City of Mission Viejo

Posted:  Just One More Pet

July 3, 2009 Posted by | Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Just One More Pet, On The Lighter Side, Pet Events, Pet Friendship and Love, pet fun, Pets, responsible pet ownership | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment