Oh, say can you see that lost and terrified dog? Please make sure it’s not yours.
More dogs get loose and lost on the Fourth of July than any other holiday of the year. The boom and flash of fireworks make it terrifying. The festivities and coming and going of guests make it easy to miss your dog getting out a door or gate.
Here are our suggestions for keeping your dog safe on July 4:
- Check your dog’s ID tags and collar. It’s easy to think, “My dog’s tags are fine. I hear them clink all the time.” Tags come loose. Metal fasteners get pulled and strained. Collars age and get loose. It takes a minute or less to check — and it saves a lot of heartache later if your dog gets loose. Making sure that your dog’s license and identification tags are still attached and in good shape is something you should do at least monthly. Checking that his or her micro chip is in place between the shoulder blades is something that you should do every time you go to the vet. Lastly, be sure that your dog’s microchip is registered to your current address and has your current phone. It does no good if your lost dog is found, the microchip is checked and you can’t be reached.
- Keep your dog in a safe space that he or she can’t escape from. This is especially important for dogs that get anxious about the loud noises of fireworks. Keeping your dog in a crate when fireworks start can be helpful. Other options are in a quiet room with the door shut. Put a sign on the door warning guests and family members not to open the door. Having a radio or stereo on playing soothing music can also be helpful. Just be sure that you’re not tuned into the “1812 Overture” or other holiday-focused music.
- Take your dog on a long walk. The exercise is calming. Being tired will help your dog sleep through the festivities or be less bothered by them.
These tips are quick and don’t take a lot of work or preparation. Your dog has no understanding of why the home front seems to be turning into a war zone. Whatever you can do will be a step to prevent your dog from becoming another holiday lost dog statistic.