Boom! 6 Ways to Keep Your Pup Safe

However you choose to celebrate, be sure you take the time to prepare and protect your pup from the dangers that come along with this holiday. Here are 6 ways for keeping them safe during your 4th of July festivities.

Sara Forsberg · June 29, 2021

Boom! 6 Ways to Keep Your Pup Safe

The 4th of July holiday is coming up this weekend. It is always a great time to have friends and family over to lounge around in the backyard, fire up the grill and set off some legally safe fireworks, or maybe you’re heading to your local 4th of July festivities and firework display. However you choose to celebrate, be sure you take the time to prepare and protect your pup from the dangers that come along with this holiday. Here are 6 ways for keeping them safe during your 4th of July festivities.

1. Keep your fur baby inside

Many revelers will set off fireworks the day before the official holiday, so you may want to  keep your pup inside.  Even pets who are usually kept outdoors should be brought inside during firework displays.  It is a mistake to assume that a fenced pet won’t look for a way to escape the yard during times of extreme duress! Even in a securely fenced yard, your four-legged friend can panic; jump the fence, dig underneath it, or chew at a gate latch to escape.   July 5th is the busiest day of the year for animal shelters in the US because of frightened dogs escaping their yards in fear of fireworks. Leave your pets at home when you go to parties, fireworks displays, parades and other gatherings. The loud fireworks, unfamiliar places and crowds can all be very frightening to pets, and there’s great risk of pets becoming spooked and running away. If you live out of earshot of city fireworks displays, don’t forget that small neighborhood displays can be just as distressing to your pets.  If you or your neighbors plan to celebrate, it is still important to keep a sharp eye on your well-secured pet.  If you plan to go to a friend’s home for the festivities, it is safer to keep your dog home. 

2. Find a comfy spot for your pup inside

Keep your pup contained and comfortable in a safe escape-proof room of your home, or in his crate during the evening hours or festivities.   A quiet bedroom, a plush dog bed with the blinds shut or the shades drawn is an ideal spot for your dog to retreat. Screens are no obstacle for scared pups, so make sure to close the windows in the room. If your dog is crate trained, indoor crating with a blanket covering for an added feeling of security could be a good option.   This is NOT a good option to try if your pet is not used to being in a crate regularly, as this will only add to their distress. Remember, pets often try to relieve anxiety by chewing, so it is important to make sure confined pets do not have access to anything that they could destroy. If you’re hosting guests, ask them to help keep an eye on your pets to make sure they don’t escape. Placing notes on exterior doors and outdoor gates can help both you and your guests remain vigilant. 

3. Safeguard your pet with a collar and ID tag

All dogs should always wear collars with ID tags. Even indoor-only pets can become so frightened during fireworks displays that they may take desperate measures to escape the noise; including breaking through door or window screens. If you don’t already have a name tag for your dog, instant ones can be made at many local pet supply stores. You should also ensure that your pet is microchipped and that the chip is properly registered with your current contact information. If you are unsure that your pet's microchip is active, see your veterinarian for a scan prior to the holiday.

4. Daytime party!

If you're able, be sure to take your dog out to relieve himself before sunset.  This will help him sleep right through the loud booming show. Celebrate at a dog-friendly, fireworks-free July 4th event during daytime hours. You can also let them run free at the dog park, or go for a long walk during the day so they’ll be exhausted and calm before the fireworks begin.

5. Use distractions, or other calming aids and give your pet something else to do

There are several natural remedies that can help anxious pups relax:

  • You can play some music, turn on the TV, turn on a fan for some white noise to help soften the jarring booms from the fireworks and keep your pup calm. On Youtube, “Relax My Dog” has a soundtrack to help dogs deal with fireworks.
  • If sounds don't soothe your fur baby, try natural calming aids. Hemp oil for dogs is becoming a popular choice as an anti-anxiety remedy. Also I have found that giving my dog a shirt with our scents on in it to snuggle up with is very calming.
  • Another option is a snuggly-fitting anxiety wrap or vest like a Thundershirt.
  • If your pooch isn’t pooped out from dog friendly day time festivities, try distracting your dog with a long-lasting treat like a big, raw meaty bone. This will help keep him occupied and focused on something yummy, rather than loud, scary noises. While this isn't a fail-safe method, it has proven effective for some pet parents.
  • Lastly, some pets respond well to prescription anti-anxiety medications or sedatives. If you have tried other options in the past that still don’t work, plan ahead and make an appointment with your vet to have your pet examined and a sedative prescribed.

6. What to do after the weekend revelry is over

Check your yard for fireworks debris before allowing pets outside to play or relax. Even if you didn’t set off fireworks yourself, debris can make its way into your yard, where curious animals may pick it up to play with or eat. Also a good reminder, a lot of people have leftover fireworks so you still may have to endure a few more evenings of neighborhood fireworks, so try and keep your pet indoors for a few days after sunset.

Hopefully these tips will help ensure a happy and safe holiday celebration for your entire human and four legged furry family.  Happy 4th of July from all of us at BARF World®!

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Sara Forsberg

Sara Forsberg

Sara has been part of the BARF team since 2019. She is responsible for some admin duties, helping keep the office running smoothly and support for Rob Jr. and the rest of the team. She has been passionate about animals since a small child growing up with a Siberian Husky and 3 cats, and as an adult having a Labrador Retriever that suffered from a lot of allergy problems. She now has a rescue orphaned kitten, Poppy, and a new addition in another Lab named Jax. She has 7 children that keep her busy in most of her spare time; but enjoys anything on or near the water, spending time with friends and family, music, reading and cooking.

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What is BARF?

"BARF®" is our acronym that means Biologically Appropriate Raw Food. It is a complete and carefully balanced blend of raw meat, fruits, vegetables and bone. Our formula mimics what nature has designed our pet's to thrive on in the wild. The result is a pet free of allergies, digestive problems, and full of life!

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