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Prepare Pets for Fourth of July Festivities

Many people are eager for Independence Day celebrations in early summer. There is much to be excited about, as festivities often begin in the afternoon with barbecues and pool parties, and commence late at night after fireworks shows that light up the night sky. Still, not everyone enjoys the extra noise and busy nature of July 4th parties, particularly furry members of the family.

Animal control services often report an increase in lost animals between July 4th and July 6th. That’s because the excitement of the holiday puts pets out of their comfort zones. 

While pet owners need not cancel their July 4th plans, they should take heed of the many ways to keep their pets safe during the festivities.
Update identification
Be sure prior to any July 4th events that pets are wearing collars with current identification information. If an address or phone number has changed since the last time you updated microchip records, be sure to check the account is current.
Be careful with alcoholic drinks
Party hosts typically serve beer, wine and cocktails. Alcoholic beverages have the potential to poison pets, says the ASPCA. Animals can become very intoxicated, severely depressed or go into comas if they drink alcohol. Keep spirited drinks well out of reach.
Check with the vet
Many pets are prone to anxiety from loud noises, such as thunderstorms and fireworks, and lots of commotion — something that occurs in spades come July 4th. Some veterinarians recommend a small course of anti-anxiety medication or a sedative to help pets cope with the stimuli.
Create a quiet space
Allow pets to ride out the day in their comfortable, quiet and cozy retreats. If necessary, create a space in an interior room. Cover the pet crate with a blanket and offer favorite toys or bedding to create a soothing environment.
Place notes on doors and gates
While it’s best to keep pets in a locked room away from the fray, some pets like to socialize with guests and are not bothered by noises. However, alert guests with notes posted on doors and fence gates to check to make sure pets are not trying to escape behind them. All doors should be closed firmly when entering or exiting.
Pick up debris
Firework debris can rain down on properties even if you were not shooting off the fireworks. Curious pets may pick it up or eat it, which runs the risk of an upset stomach or even an intestinal blockage. Check your yard before letting pets out to play.
Keep an eye on the grill
Pets can be opportunists, and those burgers and chicken drumsticks smell delicious to pets. Pets that get too close to the grill can become injured. And if pets eat leftovers, they may end up with digestive distress or even be poisoned by foods that are toxic to cats and dogs.

Pets need to be protected during summertime parties like Independence Day celebrations.