Fourth Of July Safety Tips For Pets

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It’s almost that time! The 4th of July is less than a week away. It’s time to start planning for the celebration, but don’t forget to include safety plans for your pets.

• Never leave alcoholic drinks unattended where pets can reach them. Alcoholic beverages have the potential to poison pets. If ingested, the animal could become very intoxicated and weak, severely depressed or could go into a coma. Death from respiratory failure is also a possibility in severe cases.

• Do not apply any sunscreen or insect repellent product to your pet that is not labeled specifically for use on animals. Ingestion of sunscreen products can result in drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst and lethargy. The misuse of insect repellent that contains DEET can lead to severe neurological problems.

• Always keep matches and lighter fluid out of your pets’ reach. Certain types of matches contain chlorates, which could potentially damage blood cells and result in difficulty breathing — or even kidney disease in severe cases. Lighter fluid can be irritating to skin, and if ingested can produce gastrointestinal irritation and central nervous system depression. If lighter fluid is inhaled, aspiration pneumonia and breathing problems could develop.

• Keep your pets on their normal diet. Any change, even for one meal, can give your pets severe indigestion and diarrhea. This is particularly true for older animals that have more delicate digestive systems and nutritional requirements. Also keep in mind that foods such as onions, chocolate, coffee, avocado, grapes, raisins, salt and yeast dough can all be potentially toxic to companion animals.

• Do not place glow jewelry on your pets or even allow them to play with it. While the luminescent substance contained in these products is not highly toxic, excessive drooling and gastrointestinal irritation could still result from ingesting any part of the jewelry. An intestinal blockage could also occur from swallowing large pieces of the plastic-based product.

• Keep citronella candles, insect coils and oil products out of reach from your pet. Ingestion of any of the previously mentioned products can produce stomach irritation and possibly even central nervous system depression. If inhaled, the oils could cause aspiration pneumonia in pets.

• Never use fireworks around pets! While exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns and/or trauma to the face and paws of curious pets, even unused fireworks can pose a danger. Many types contain potentially toxic substances, including potassium nitrate, arsenic and other heavy metals.

• Loud, crowded fireworks displays are no fun for pets, so please resist the urge to take them to Independence Day festivities. Instead, keep your little guys safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area at home. Being inside is the safest place for them while you are out enjoying the fireworks.

Ironically, July 5th is one of the busiest days for animal shelters throughout our nation (numerous pets frantically escape due to not being safely secured in the house during surrounding fireworks displays). You can help change this by having a plan that works best for you and your pets. Keeping your beloved companion animals safe during July 4th celebrations is an absolute necessity. If your pet should run away or become lost over the holiday, making sure it is microchipped or wearing I.D. tags with your current contact information will improve the chances you will be reunited.

Free spay-neuter vouchers

Please remember to spread the great news! If you live on the west side of the Beeline Highway (vouchers are restricted to residents living from the rodeo grounds up to Airport Road on the west side of Payson) and have a cat that needs to be spayed or neutered, please contact the Humane Society of Central Arizona at (928) 474-5590 to obtain a free spay or neuter voucher!

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