7 Things You Should Know about Dogs and Fireworks

With New Years coming just tomorrow, it’s easy to get yourself psyched up for the coming fresh start: through partying, fireworks, and a good time with family a friends. We all know that most dogs don’t like fireworks. Dog and fireworks aren’t a natural combination, so keep these facts in mind:


1.    It’s Normal for Dogs to Feel Afraid

When your dog hears the first shot of fireworks shoot off and runs to bury his head underneath your chair, don’t worry. It’s easy for us to forget how strange fireworks are because we are so used to them. However dogs and fireworks aren’t a natural pairing, so they can’t prepare for them. The sound is louder to dogs than it is to humans and your dog doesn’t even know what is making the sound.


dog_grooming_towl_dry2. Your Dog Experiences Being Startled with Every Pop

We expect the sound around other big national holidays in the US. We also expect not only one explosion, but for them to happen again and again. Dogs and fireworks are foreign ideas to one another and they cannot predict when they will start or stop or what they will do when they explode so for every firework that goes off, your dog is likely to be startled again because he wasn’t expecting it.


3. Not All Dogs Are Afraid of Fireworks

Just like humans, dogs are individuals with their own set of fears and personality quirks. Just as some dogs can swim and some dogs can’t, some dogs are afraid of fireworks and others aren’t. For dog safety, pet parents should avoid making assumptions about how their dogs and fireworks will respond to one another. Never force a dog to be near fireworks if you don’t know how they will respond. It puts your dog, you, and anyone nearby at risk of danger as even the most even-tempered dog can be unpredictable in circumstances like this.


4. Dog Senses Make Fireworks More Intense

Dogs and fireworks are different because of your dog’s acute sense of hearing. Dogs are not only more sensitive to the sound of fireworks, but often respond to the smell of gunpowder and other burning odors that fireworks create making their experience with fireworks far more intense than our own.


5.    Fireworks Do Not Equal Thunderstorms

Most dogs have a hard time with thunderstorms, but they’re at least able to get a warning that the storms are coming through barometric pressures, high winds, and static electricity in the air. Fireworks come without warning which can intimidate dogs more and make dogs and fireworks less compatible.


6.    Create a Safe Space to Help Your Dog

When you know that fireworks are coming and you don’t know how your dog will respond, one for the best things you can do is create a safe space for your dog to experience fireworks in. This doesn’t mean putting them anywhere near the fireworks, but instead, use a crate, dim room, or one of their other favorite places, and place familiar blankets and favorite toys around them. This can help ease the experience of your dogs and fireworks while also lessening the stimuli around them.


dog_july_4th_fireworks7.    Stay Calm and Distract Your Pup

Dogs feed off of the emotions around them, especially the emotions of their pet parents. If you know fireworks are coming and you’re aware of how your dogs and fireworks don’t get along, don’t let yourself become uneasy too. Instead, stay calm and avoid making a fuss or seeming anxious yourself. Also try playing with your dog in a safe area. This can help your dog by associating games and his favorite things with an otherwise negative event. If repeated, you may be able to remove your pet’s anxiety overtime when it comes to how they respond to fireworks.

Have a New Year’s Party Filled with Dog Safety

When throwing a New Year’s party, it’s easy to forget about the pets in your life and how dog safety might be achieved while the party is going on. Whether you’re considering festivities in your own home or going somewhere else, there are a few ways that you can help your dog have a happier, safer New Year’s Eve.


Create a Safe Space Away from the Party

You may think of creating a safe space for your dog if she is more skittish, shy, or just unwelcoming to people, but even the most social dog can become worn out by loud music or lots of unusual activity. If you’re planning to hold a party in your home, you should consider making one room dark, quiet, and filled with your dog’s belongings for when she needs a break from all of the festivities. The best way to keep dog safety is by providing your dog with a dark room that has items in it to make your pet feel comfortable. By the same token, if there will be fireworks or other loud noises during the night, especially if you are not home, it’s still a good idea to prepare a safety room.


Turn on Soothing Music or Calming Scentsdog_july_4th_fireworks

If you do not plan to have a wild party or have a movie marathon, one of the best ways you can help your dog through the unnerving pop of fireworks is to play slow, soft, classical music. The music can not only help drown out the sounds all together, but it has been proven to help many dogs relax. The smell of lavender has also been proven to help dogs relax in tough situations. So if you’re worried about dog safety, consider these as good options for small things to change.


Minimize Guest List for Dog Safety

If you know that you will be hosting a party come New Year’s Eve, consider keeping the guest list shorter and the party more intimate in order to minimize the noise and action happening around the home. With the mixture of fireworks, unusual happenings like preparations and parties, your dog may feel a little anxious about the future. With fewer people in your home, you will be able to minimize the chance for your dog to panic and respond harshly to the stimuli around him.


Be Careful of the Snacks Laid Out

Whether your party foods are on a table in the kitchen or the living room, it’s always important to make sure your dog cannot get into the food. This not only means keeping food lifted high enough he can’t sweep goods from the table, but constantly supervising the table, the garbage cans, and anywhere your guests are putting their plates. Be sure to tell your party guests whether they are allowed to feed your dog anything from the party table and remind them of how unhealthy alcohol is for pets. Do not let them lick the bottles or cans of anything that contains alcohol. Also remember that caffeine and high amounts of sugar are dangerous so if you are serving soda, coffee, or other sugary beverages, the garbage from them should be picked up appropriately at all times.


Happy New Year and welcome to 2016!


Holy Holly Cat and Dog Safety for the Holidays

As much fun as the holidays can be, it’s easy for any family to get carried away. Decorations, lights, colors, and delicious, festive food make up the entire month of December and sometimes it’s just a little too easy to forget when something might not be such a good idea for dog safety. As you celebrate your favorite winter season holidays, consider some of these tips to keep your days fun and danger free.


Be Wary of Decorations

Whether you’re using tinsel, tons of lights, or holiday plants, remember that dogs and cats tend to think that these decorations are their new playthings. To keep cords away from your pets, consider taping them down or covering them with cable protectors. If you are hanging holly, mistletoe, or other decorative plants, consider making them unreachable or always keeping an eye on them. Electrocution, upset stomachs, or cuts in the mouth and insides if any of the sharp decorations are swallowed.


Watch Out for Falling Trees and Chewed Gifts

If you have a large dog, consider whether they will be able to pull over the holiday tree in your house. Consider whether your cat will knock decorations off of the tree and whether your dog will chase after those decorations. For dog safety, know how your cats or dogs will react to the trees you have in your home, including whether they will try to eat the branches. If you do not believe your pets can behave, consider alternatives such as not putting up a large tree or creating a barrier around the tree. This should also be considered if you worry about your dog running up to any gifts or stockings that are within reach and tearing them open.


Say No to Surprise Petsdog services

Adopting a cat or dog isn’t a one-time thing, but a lifelong commitment. With that said, the pets who are purchased or adopted without fully discussing it with the family are often those who end up at the pound. Dog safety includes thinking about the life of the dog and where they will be after New Year’s rings in. If you believe a pet is something that the receiver really wants, go to adoption centers together and allow them to knowingly pick out their new pet family member. Make sure that the time, dedication, and needs of the pet were talked about prior to adoption so the new pet parent, especially if they are younger, know what will be expected of them.


No Holiday Snacks for the Pooch

If you want to treat your dog to a special holiday surprise, skip the eggnog and consider making something that is dog safe. Some of the worst things that can be given to dogs around the holidays include animal bones, spices, and some vegetables like onions. There are so many great recipes for holiday-inspired dog food and treats that you can make with leftovers from your holiday feasts or prepare to serve along with them.


Bring the Holidays Home This Month with Pet Stores

Dashing through the pet stores  in a one dog pickup truck, all the horns we blow, barking all the way! Bark, bark, bark!

Christmas is coming and it’s time to reward your dog for her loyalty, his playfulness, and the wonderful addition she has made to the family over the last year. There are so many things that you could do for your dog when the Christmas season comes around that it’s hard to imagine not knowing what to do. However, instead of just picking up your dog’s favorite bone from the store, here are a few other ideas that you can do instead of or in addition to your usual doggie Christmas gifts from the pet stores.


Dog Grooming dog_groomers

An excellent Christmas gift for any dog is a dog grooming trip. You can find grooming places inside of most pet stores . Not only is it fun and rejuvenating, but it is also good for your dog’s health. If you’re looking for a way to be fun and practical this Christmas, consider taking your dog to the groomers. This can help out pet parents in many ways. Dog grooming often takes a couple of hours depending on the size and coat of your dog as well as which services you’re going to get done. This can give you the chance to do Christmas shopping while your pup is being cleaned. Just remember that dog grooming  isn’t daycare so pick up your dog promptly once they’re done.


New Winter Jacket

If your pup has a tough time in the cold, consider getting her some new winter fashion from pet stores , but only do so if she needs the jacket or likes dressing up. If you’re getting her dog clothing for practical reasons (like to stay warm), remember that not all sweaters are created equally and many of them may not actually keep your dog warm.


pet_accessoriesDoggie Gift Basket

While at pet stores , pick up all of your dog’s favorite things from treats to toys to whatever else you can think of and arrange your own doggie gift basket. These can be fun and great ideas because you can specialize them with a large bakery good for an extra yummy treat while also putting in dog necessities like training treats. If your dog has any toys that need replacing, now is also a great time to do it during the Christmas season spending.


Filtered Doggie Bowl

While this might seem a bit extreme to some, filtered and fountain water bowls from the pet stores  actually offer health benefits to dogs and cats alike. It can encourage drinking where some animals have a tendency to dehydrate themselves. It has also been proven to help prevent urinary tract infections due to dirty water. What better gifts are there for the holidays than ones that are not only fun, but healthy?

Why This Year’s Dog Grooming Deaths are Worth Discussing

If you haven’t been paying attention to your social media feed, there has been a new death during dog grooming. Colby, a beautiful and sweet 2 year old golden retriever died after being in a Petco grooming salon. Long story short, he was put in a drying kennel at the location and then died of a heat stroke according to the vet. Petco claims their drying kennels do not release heat, but they have taken them out of all Petco locations to prevent this from happening in the future.


dog groomingSo Does This Mean Dog Grooming is Dangerous?

Many pet parents out there are jumping to the conclusion that this means that grooming is not safe for their pet. Mostly this is out of fear that their dog will die while in the care of the groomer, which something no one wants to go through. However, it is important to note that these deaths are far and few between. Dogs do not die every day. Most dogs come out of the grooming salon feeling and looking great and regular grooming  can help keep them healthy. Even Colby had been going to the same Petco grooming salon since he was a puppy.


However, It Does Mean That You Should Choose Your Groomer Carefully

Some people think that just because the grooming salon they take their pet to is a nationally recognized company that they will get the best care. This alone should never be the reason you choose the salon you send your pet to. You want to choose a grooming salon that has experienced groomers who know what they are doing and ones that will care for your pet as their own. Only then can you have the confidence to know that your pet is being treated properly.


While We’re on the Topic of Choosing a Grooming Salon…

It should also be noted that price should never be your main motivator when choosing a grooming salon. A lot of people choose the big name brands like Petco and Petsmart because they have cheaper prices. Again, it is essential that you find a grooming salon where you know you will get the high quality care that your pet deserves. This does not mean that big pet stores cannot provide great care for your pet. Simply do not assume that you will get that level of care. Also, judge each location individually rather than assuming they are all the same.


pet_grooming_servicesWhat Does This Mean for the Pet Industry

The real thing that many are taking from this unfortunate incident is that there need to be pet safety standards established. No pet parent should have to fear that their dog will have something happen to them when they go into the grooming salon. While getting industry wide standards may be difficult, it can be done with some work from organizations and passionate pet parents who want to be able to ensure their pet’s safety while in the grooming salon.