How to keep your pets safe on Fourth of July and other holidays

By Berry Craig, Building Kentucky

Fireworks, picnics, pool parties and barbecues make the Fourth of July a favorite.

While our pets are fans of dropped bites of burgers and friends and family members’ pets over for celebrations, Independence Day festivities can be frightening and dangerous for dogs and cats.

Here are some tips from MetLife Pet Insurance to keep your pets safe and happy during holiday celebrations.

Fourth of July pet safety guide

More pets go missing on 4th of July than any other day of the year.

  • Be sure doors, fences and gates are secured.Remind owners of visiting pets in the house and alert them if a pet is seen somewhere she or he shouldn’t be.
  • Microchip your pet and keep the information updated. PetFinder reports that although only 22 percent of pets in shelters are reunited with owners, that rate doubles for microchipped pets.
  • Establish a plan if your pet should get loose. Check social media networks for lost pets in your area and confirm available resources with your local shelters.

Be sure to deal with all those “bombs bursting in air” by:

  • Muffling the noise of fireworks. Find the quietest room in your house – often a basement or interior room. Close the blinds, pull the curtains and turn on some music or the television to help mask the outdoor booms and blasts.
  • Asking your vet about anti-anxiety treatments. If your pet has reacted badly to fireworks or thunder in the past, talk with your vet about available treatment options.
  • Keeping your pets indoors. Even if your pet is not particularly anxious about fireworks, a sudden or close loud noise could send them scampering away – even climbing a fence. A lost pet is traumatic for everyone as they can run into traffic or face other dangers.

Tips to make your holidays safer and more enjoyable for your pets and guests

Keep human food, beverages and products away from pets! Alcohol, ice cream, sunscreen, lighter fluid – ae often part of human celebrations, but they can make pets sick or worse. Glow sticks, glow jewelry and even citronella candles can also make pets sick. Special sunscreens made for pets can be helpful, though – especially for hairless breeds or breeds with light or thin hair.

Monitor heat and water. A cookout by the pool may be perfect for humans, but pets should be monitored closely. Heat exhaustion and drowning are both real dangers for pets. If you will be too distracted with guests to monitor your pets, they will be safer inside!

Tips to a happier, healthier summer for your pet

Set a routine. Even with changing schedules, your pet will be happier if walks and playtime happens daily and around the same time.

Visit the vet for a seasonal checkup. Preventive checkups for things like fleas, ticks, heartworms and overall health will keep you happier and stress-free.

Explore pet insurance. Sometimes, no matter how careful you are, pets do become sick or injured. MetLife Pet Insurance can help cover the cost of vet bills when the unexpected occurs.

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