Independence Day: Keeping your Pets Safe and Happy

Backyard barbecues, drinks by the fire pit, and watching the fireworks explode in the night sky. It’s that time of the year again to celebrate the 4th! That also means it’s time to prepare your pet(s) for the excitement and stress that is to come in the next few weeks. We have some tips and tricks to keep your pet(s) safe, calm, and content while you, your family, and your friends enjoy the festivities. A list of sites where some of our information came from, as well as helpful websites to check out, will be listed at the end of the post.

  • Drinks just for you: Any drinks left unattended could be taste tested by a curious pet and lead to health issues such as weakness, depression, low blood sugar, breathing difficulties, and potentially a comatose state. “Never trust a dog to watch your food.” -Patrick, age 10
  • Stay-in night: Providing pets with a safe place to stay while you are away is important. Keeping them at home with a padded kennel or their favorite blanket and making sure all doors and windows are securely shut and locked is the safest place for your pet(s), not in the car waiting for you or by your side while loud noises and mysterious people are all around them. No fireworks should ever be set off in the proximity of pets. At our facility we offer boarding.
  • Read the labels: If your pet(s) are outside and enjoying the weather with you during a family get-together, make sure any sunscreen or insect repellent used on them is pet-friendly. Keep any citronella candles or other products out of reach to ensure nothing toxic is ingested.
  • Sharing isn’t caring in this case: While you may be enjoying your ribs, corn-on-the-cob, onions, garlic, and caffeinated drinks, your pet(s) could be giving you those eyes that scream “I love you very much and would enjoy a taste of that.” Many foods that are safe for us are harmful and potentially even fatal for pets to snack on. Instead of sneaking table scraps to them, consider giving them one of their favorite treats or possibly making some special pet treats just for them. Try this recipe for some popsicles to keep your pups feeling cool and appreciated.
  • No glow parties: Those cute glow in the dark bracelets and wands may look adorable on your puppy, but any chewing could lead to hazardous situations when the poisonous chemicals inside are leaked out. The plastic could also cause choking and possibly block the airways to stop breathing.
  • Microchipping: If your pet(s) are an escape artist, you probably already have this done, but microchipping your pet(s) ensures if they were to get away that they could be properly identified and returned to their rightful home safe and sound.
  • Clean-up crew: Before letting your pet(s) out into the yard, make sure any lit punks, lighters, leftover fireworks, trash, pop cans, or anything else left behind is properly picked up and disposed of. This ensures that it’s a safe environment and nothing hazardous will be left behind for an excited pet to chew on or burn their paws on.

We are always prepared to help if any circumstances were to require a vet visit. If any emergencies were to occur after hours and we could not be reached, we refer out to All City Pet Care in Sioux Falls, SD. Their number is (605) 335-4004. Have a safe and happy 4th of July from all of us at the Veterinary Medical Clinic.


American Veterinary Medical Association:

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals: