Your Dog and July 4th

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Your Dog and July 4th

Like so many other animal shelters across America, some in Los Angeles are asking for “Four-Day Fosters” to empty out the shelters as they need to free up as much space as possible for July 4th holiday. The staffs know that they are going to soon be inundated with pets that were scared from the noise of the fireworks.

Here are some tips to keep your dogs as safe as possible during the celebration. Remember that fireworks enthusiasts start a day or two early.

• Keep your dog indoors during the nearby fireworks displays. The sounds travel many miles and can be as disturbing as thunder to many dogs.

• If possible, especially if you are having friends over to celebrate, keep your dog in a quiet room, with water and toys. Perhaps play some soothing music to filter out the thundering booms of the fireworks.

• Make sure everyone is reminded to keep the backyard gates and all doors secure after using them. Children can be particularly forgetful about this.

• Barbecuing can be fun, but remember that dogs should never have chicken bones, chicken skin (turkey bones and turkey skin included), small ribs bones, corn cobs, and candy.

• Make sure that holiday decorations never wind up in your dog’s mouths. You wouldn’t let your children eat them, so make sure your dogs aren’t getting into them either.

• Dogs can panic because of fireworks, which means they can start fear biting. If your dog is prone to this, it is another reason to keep them safe in a quiet room during the festivities.

• Make sure that your dogs have a collar on in case they bolt through a door or window. If they are already wearing one, do you have an ID tag for them?

• Is your pet microchipped? If not, you can get one at your vet or through many of the shelters usually in the city where they are licensed.

• I use Thundershirts for my dogs and, at least for them, they are effective. You can buy them at many pet stores.

• Avoid going to any fireworks displays with them.

• If your dog is in your car, remember that, if you have a harness, you should us it. Remember, people shoot off fireworks and firecrackers days before and days after July 4th. The sudden noises could cause your dog to panic.