We love our pets as much as you do, and because we refer to them as family members, we’ve complied a list of our top seven tips (and sprinkled in some common sense) for keeping them safe and happy this 4th of July holiday and throughout the rest of the Summer.
1. Make your pet identifiable – keep their identification tags, microchip and your contact information all up to date. This is the single most important preventative measure you can take in advance. The tools are there, use them.
2. Leave them behind – as much as tomorrow is a family holiday, pets are better left where they are most secure and comfortable. This will save you and your pet unneeded stress, even if you plan to attend a dog-friendly function. They wont take it personally, trust us.
3. Get plenty of exercise – spend the early part of the day at the park or on an extra long walk with your pet. The more tired out your dog is, the easier it will be for them to relax once the sun sets.
4. Vehicles are for riding in, not babysitting – never leave your pet unattended in a vehicle. Because even cracked windows are not enough to keep an animal lover’s good intentions from going terribly wrong for both the pet and themselves. See Arizona Laws regarding animal cruelty here.
5. Beware of your party gear and decorations – pet-proof your home and keep your holiday decorations, fireworks, matches and lighter fluid out of their reach. Need we elaborate on this one? If you do take your pet somewhere new, be on the look out for these things as well.
6. Stick with products and food intended for pets – while we all make exceptions to this one (whipped cream, carrots, chicken), it is best to advise friends and relatives against feeding scraps to your pet. Some seemingly harmless items can be toxic or dangerous to our pets (cooked bones, avocado, etc.). At the same time, don’t use sunscreen, insect repellent, inflatable flotation devices or clothing items that are not specifically labeled for use on animals.
7. A knowledgeable pet owner is a happy pet owner – know who to contact in the event a pet does go missing and become familiar with your own veterinarian’s hours or the nearest emergency pet hospital.
For more information, visit the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control laws website.