The Fourth of July is a beautiful holiday in the United States where Americans celebrate their Independence. Celebrations include friends, family, perhaps a cookout and, as soon as it gets dark, those magical fireworks. While the holiday may be oh so pleasant for you, it is very likely to be very stressful for your Little Pampered Dog. Below are 7 tips on making this Fourth of July as pleasant and safe as possible for your pup.
1. Walk and play with your dog early in the day to tire him out. A tired dog is a better behaved and less stressed out dog. Early in the day before all of the commotion, take your Little Pampered Dog out for a nice long walk, play fetch, or whatever he likes. The idea here is not to exhaust your dog, but to burn off that extra energy in order to help your dog relax during the fireworks and festivities.
2. Make sure that your dog has on identification. Dogs can panic during fireworks and their instinct is to run to get away from what they find frightening. All it takes is one open door or window somewhere and your dog could get out. You should definitely keep your dog confined during fireworks, but you never know what can happen. So be safe, rather than sorry, and make sure that your dog’s tags are current.
3. Be consistent with your dog’s diet. Resist the temptation to share your Fourth of July meal with your dog. Often Fourth of July celebrations involve a cookout with delicious smells. But as tempting as it is to give in to your dog, remember that dogs’ stomachs are very sensitive to changes. High-fat burgers or hot dogs may cause a stomach upset or worse. Do not give your dog onions, garlic, avocado, grapes or chocolate as these can lethal to them. Just keep your pup on his regular diet, as approved by your Veterinarian, for his own good.
4. Confine your dog to an interior room during fireworks. An interior room will insulate the dog from the lights and sounds of neighborhood fireworks celebrations and ensure that your dog cannot get out. Make sure to have your dog’s favorite toys, food and water close by to make sure he has what he needs for a little while. If your dog wants to lie in his bed, under furniture or his crate, in the room, let him. The idea is to make your dog feel as comfortable and safe as possible.
5. Protect your dog and your guests by setting ground rules. Make sure to inform your guests that you have a dog and that all windows and doors need to be kept shut and that your dog should not be fed table scraps or given treats. Don’t be shy about any other rules or preferences that you may have when it comes to your dog. Your home belongs to you and your dog – and your dog depends on you to set the boundaries.
6. Never, ever, ever use human insect repellent or human sunscreen on dogs. The ingredients in these products can prove lethal to your dog. Instead, discuss your needs with your vet so that he can make recommendations for your particular Little Pampered Dog.
7. Potty your dog before it gets dark. The last thing you want to do is have to take your dog out during fireworks because you forgot to potty him earlier.
The bottom-line is to use common-sense and realize that fireworks, a party atmosphere and guests can be really stressful for your dog. A hard-line and careful planning will ensure that it is a safe holiday for your Little Pampered Dog and a really enjoyable day for you.