Keeping Pets Safe on Independence DayPublished July 1, 2011
Commemorating our nation's independence on July 4, Independence Day is not only one of the most festive occasions all around the country, it is one of those special occasions when family and friends have a great opportunity to get together to enjoy those mouth-watering hot dogs and hamburgers fresh off the grill. Visitors arrive amply supplied with garden salads, potato salad, baked beans and, of course, those luscious desserts and bubbly beverages to which we look forward to all year. Of course, vegetarians are always prepared with the most delicious and inviting dishes which promise to delight their guests.
But while we two legged-ones are partying heartily, enjoying the wonderful friendships and fabulous food being served, this is definitely one of the most important holidays in which we must pay special attention to the safety and security of our four-legged family members.
It goes without saying that our hamburgers, salad and coleslaw might be sadly lacking without an ample supply of garlic and onions. But since these two items are dangerous for kitties, extra care is needed if cats are hanging out on the patio begging for a taste. Rich human food can cause digestive upsets in both cats and dogs.
With nightfall falling upon us as the sun disappears from the horizon, the air will soon be filled with an abundance of loud, frightening noises and brilliant firecrackers lighting up the sky. And while we may consider them fascinating and exciting, pets will certainly vehemently disagree. These noises can frighten and confuse them since their hearing is so acute. In fact, what we can hear from a distance of 25 feet, dogs can pick up from 250 yards away and cats, with their enhanced hearing, can become highly alarmed as well.
Of course the easiest way to keep pets safe is to leave them indoors. Keep them home if you are visiting or attending fireworks displays. At our house, we found confining our cats to the bedroom with the blinds closed with soft, soothing music playing in the background to be quite effective.
Any fenced in area for pets does not guarantee their safety. If sufficiently frightened, they can easily escape over a wall seeking a place in which to hide. Make sure your pets are wearing ID tags on their collars, just in case they get away from you. If you must walk your dog during a fireworks display, keep your canine leashed.
And if you feel that your pet must be sedated, please consult with your veterinarian ahead of time, and do not administer any medications made for human use. Following these few simple safety precautions will help to ensure that you, your family and your furry companions will have a safe and enjoyable July 4.
What other safety precautions can you offer? Share them in a comment.