5 Tips on How to Keep your Pet Safe on July 4th


The July 4th weekend is here, and for many folks that means lots of fun in the sun, backyard bar-b-ques and fireworks. For us humans, it’s a chance to kick back and relax while enjoying the company of family and friends – including the four-legged kind in our lives. However, for our pets, the July 4th holiday can be a nerve-wracking and dangerous time. In fact, it could even be downright deadly. So, while you’re enjoying the extended holiday weekend, keep in mind these five tips on how to keep your pet safe on July 4th.

july 4th pet safety tips
American Pride – Dog with Flag Bandana


1. Pet Firework Safety

There’s nothing better than the bright bursts of color and the loud booms that are the joy of fireworks on the Fourth of July, but for your pet, it’s probably not an enjoyable experience. Many animals – dogs especially – detest fireworks. The loud noise is scary and cause for alarm by dog standards. It might be tempting to take Fido along for the festivities, but you should resist. Instead, leave him home in a sheltered, quiet area that’s escape-proof.

2. Fourth of July Doggy Diet

Good food, and plenty of it, is abundant during this holiday, and your furry friend smells it a mile away. Many human foods (onions, grapes, avocado, chocolate, etc.) are toxic, and even deadly, to dogs, so it’s a good idea to keep you pet on his normal diet. Resist the urge to give your dog even the tiniest scrap from the grill.

On that same note, keep an eye on your pet around alcoholic beverages and make sure everyone keeps their cups out of reach of the pets. Dogs love drinking alcohol, and won’t miss an opportunity to lap at a cup within his reach. However, too much booze for Fido and you may find yourself with a very sick pet that requires a trip to the vet.

3. Pet Sun Protection

Despite being covered in hair, pets can get sunburned, so it’s a good idea to apply sunscreen on them, too. However, avoid using any products that aren’t made specifically for your pet.

4. Pet Campfire and Grill Safety

Curious animals can get into trouble quite easily, especially when there’s food involved. Keep an eye on your pet around campfires and hot grills to avoid burns. Also, keep matches and lighter fluids out of reach. These products contain toxic substances that may cause difficulty breathing, kidney disease, gastrointestinal irritation and nervous system depression in severe cases.

5. Miscellaneous July 4th Pet Safety

Citronella candles and insect repellents are a no-no for Fido. Ingesting or inhaling these products can cause stomach upset and even nervous system depression and difficulty breathing.

And finally, we all love glow sticks and jewelry after the sun goes down, and your pet does, too. However, avoid putting these things on your dog or allowing him to play with them. Although the liquid inside is supposed to be non-toxic, it could still cause excess drooling and stomach problems for your pooch.


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WagBrag’s co-founder, Russ Boles, has a deep history in animal rescue and welfare. For the past 12 years, Russ has served in various roles with Atlanta-based animal advocacy organizations focused on rescue, training and education. In addition, Russ led a local rescue volunteer team into New Orleans immediately after Hurricane Katrina, assisting in efforts to rescue and care for stranded animals. This experience changed his life, and animal rescue and advocacy will always be a part of everything he does.