Many of us are making plans for the fourth of July: cookouts, family get-togethers, days at the beach, and of course, where we are going to watch fireworks? But what about your pup? Many dogs have anxiety around fireworks, and consequently, July 5th is a super busy day at animal shelters and veterinary hospitals where dogs that have run away end up. There are steps you can take to make sure your dog is safe – and, if they run away, that can help you be reunited.
Signs of an Overheated Dog
The first week of July can be a scorcher, and dogs experience heat differently from humans. They cannot sweat like we do, but they do pant; that is one way they expel excess heat. If the panting become frantic, please take note. Other signs of over-heating are labored breathing, extreme salivation, diarrhea, vomiting, and bright-red gums. These are all warning signs that your dog is overheated, as are disorientation, lethargy, staggering, collapsing or convulsion.
If their temperature rises to over 106 degrees Fahrenheit (taken rectally), they can no longer cool themselves. This might sound high, but temperatures outside of 80 degrees Fahrenheit with 90% humidity can push them over the edge.
And NEVER leave a dog in a car unattended. Temperatures rise quickly and dangerously in cars and a dog can overheat in a matter of minutes.
How to Cool Dogs Down
If you believe your dog is overheating you have to act quickly. Overheating can kill a dog if left untreated or treated too late. So do not take these signs lightly.
Move your dog to a cooler area, and place near a fan if possible. If you have a cooling mat, use it now, or take a towel and ring it out in cold water and have the dog lay down on the towel. You can also apply cool compresses to the bottom of their feet, ears and head; a cool, wet towel can be draped over their body as well. Encourage the dog to drink cool water.
Do not use ice or frozen packs for any of these things as that could create shock. If you do not see a change for the better in short order or you still have concerns you need to get them to an ER vet quickly. Time is seriously of the essence when dogs overheat.
Dogs & Fireworks
Fireworks bring unusual smells, sounds and sights, all of which can upset a dog and even cause them to panic. Dogs that are affected by fireworks might hide, tremble, whine, or even run away.
Keeping Dogs Safe on The Fourth of July Holiday
Talk to your vet ahead of time as they might suggest something for the dog to take that will calm them. Choices could range from a CBD product to something the vet prescribes. Do not give your dog anything that you haven’t cleared with your vet.
There are even dog-calming vests. Look up “anti-anxiety vests” to see what is available.
Keep your dog away from anywhere there are fireworks, even smaller consumer type fireworks.
Create a safe space for them. Consider moving their bed to a room or floor in your house where the outside noises are at a minimum. Use their crate, if they are familiar and comfortable in one, and make sure to provide your dog with some favorite toys and treats.
Turn on a fan or use your computer or phone to play white noise near the dog, to drown out firework noise.
Before the Fireworks Start
Give your dog a good long walk, as they will most likely be sequestered away for a few hours that evening.
Talk To Your Dog The Right Way
If you stay home, you can comfort your dog, but there are ways to do this that will help – and ways that will make things worse. If you have anxiety around the fact that your dog is upset, that stress will be detectable to them.
Hug them. Talk to them in soothing tones. However, if all you can get out is “it’s OK, it’s OK” repeated over and over again in a nervous way, that will not help, and might make things worse. Check in with yourself. You can even read them a book as your tone will be more normal and soothing.
Make Sure Your Dog Has ID
Make sure your dog has proper identification. They should have a collar on, with an ID tag, and most importantly, hopefully they are microchipped; there is a much better chance of you being reunited if they should run away.
The AKC offers a service called AKC Reunite. If your dog is microchipped, you can register them for a nominal one-time fee (less than $20). Then, if your runaway dog is found and brought to a vet or shelter that has a microchip scanner, they can get you back together ASAP!
If you have lost a dog or found a dog, you can call the AKC Reunite service at 800-252-7894 to get the ball rolling. And you can read some happy reunion stories on their website.
Save Your Dog’s Life by Avoiding These 12 Foods
Our dogs bring so much to our lives, and we spend time every day walking them, feeding them, and generally addressing their well-being. But did you know that some commonly found foods – that might in your kitchen or somewhere your dog can reach, right now – could be deadly for your pooch? Here are 12 foods you should never feed or allow your dog to accidentally ingest.
To be prepared, keep the contact details of your local veterinarian, the nearest emergency clinic, and the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (888-426-4435) at hand. Read: Save Your Dog’s Life by Avoiding These 12 Foods
The Pandemic Left These Animals Homeless – But Malls Have a Solution
Animal shelters are finding new homes for their furry friends in a place you might not expect – malls. As part of an effort to alleviate the burden of increased animal intakes during quarantine, malls across the US are offering empty storefronts to animal rescue groups for free or at a steep discount. The collaborations between malls and animal havens are gaining popularity and have been widely successful in finding homes for pets. Read The Pandemic Left These Animals Homeless – But Malls Have a Solution
Pawsitive Impact: Can Pets Boost Your Health and Happiness?
Love hanging out with puppies and kittens? According to the CDC there are myriad reasons why having pets improves our lives.
Thinking about adding a pet to your household? Already have a pet and wondering why they bring so much joy to our lives? Let’s look at the research.