Summer can be a great time to celebrate, but if you have a dog, you need to keep your pet’s safety in mind during the festivities. Barbecues, fireworks, and pool parties are all part and parcel of summer, and with a little planning your dog can enjoy most of the fun with you. Here’s how to handle summer outdoor event safety when you have dogs.
Summer barbecues are great fun for dogs, especially when everyone fusses over the four-legged cuties. But make sure you set your ground rules with both your guests and your pets before the fun begins.
Dogs shouldn’t be fed from guests’ plates--not only can it pose health risks for your pet, it can also undermine your dog’s training. Plan to either feed your dog ahead of time or cook a special meal for your pet right along with the rest of the barbecue meal. Dogs love a nice piece of lean chicken or steak, and many vegetables are suitable for dogs, too. Just remember to limit the fats and avoid sharing alcohol, sugary foods, and anything with bones in it that could harm your pet.
If your dog loves water, you might be tempted to bring him to your pool parties. Some dogs may love this, but for others, swimming around large groups of people can be stressful or over-exciting. Be sure to watch your dog for signs of stress or anxiety around your party guests and never leave your dog unattended with small children, even if he's 'good with kids'.
Make sure your dog can get in and out of the pool easily. Your pet can become tired very quickly in water and if they can't get out when they need to, they risk drowning or swallowing too much pool water, which can make them sick. Limit your dog's time in the pool and provide a quiet place for him to rest, preferably away from the excitement of the party.
Many outdoor summer events culminate in a fun fireworks display, but remember that most dogs don't like the noise and uncertainty of fireworks. Make sure your dog is secured and safe during these displays, preferably indoors with something or someone to comfort them. Just because you're enjoying the show, it doesn't mean your pet will, so keep him in mind when planning your outdoor events.