Jun 23 2015

Fourth of July Safety Tips

With the loud booms of fireworks approaching, we thought we’d take the time to offer some pet advice for your upcoming Independence Day celebrations.

While we love a good BBQ, feeding those extra scraps to your furry friend (and no, we’re not talking about your crazy uncle) will undoubtedly cause an upset stomach.  Not the explosion you will be looking forward to seeing!  Not to mention, some picnic treats such as avocados, onions, and grapes can be toxic to your pet.  Sometimes, it’s hard for your guests to resist such big, begging, lovable eyes.  If you have guests who just insist on giving your pooch a treat, have a bowl of their favorite treats (or even a ration of their food) available.   Also avoid leaving any alcoholic beverages unattended.

Don’t set yourself up for an accident.  Make sure you keep your pet far away from any open flames, lighter fluid, matches, or fireworks.  Lit fireworks can obviously cause severe burns and trauma to a curious critter, but unlit fireworks also pose a risk.  Most fireworks contain substances that are toxic if ingested.

Is your pet a “Nervous Nelly” when the fireworks go off?  Make sure they get plenty of exercise during the day.  If possible, keep the windows and curtains closed and make sure you have a safe place for them to retreat.  Music, or soft background noise, may be helpful for some pets.  Consider giving your pet something fun to do- like a Kong filled with his favorite treat.  For those of you who have tried all of the above, consider trying a supplement.  We offer a natural product, Zylkene, that can be purchased anytime.  It can help calm without the side effects of a drug.  If this is something you would like to try for your pet, we recommend starting it a week in advance.

Finally, for those of you thinking your pet can handle the big crowds and bright booms, think again.  Do you know that more pets get lost on July 4th than any other day of the year?  For example, guests accidentally leave gates open, fences can be jumped, etc.  If your pet is not microchipped, now is the perfect time to consider doing so.  Although they may be sporting their tags on the most studded, bad to the bone, collar this side of the Olentangy…many pets come in to the shelters with missing collars.  A microchip is a permanent form of identification and your proof of ownership.  Call the office if you are interested in setting up an appointment to have your pet microchipped.

-the team at VAC-

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