Can your dog do this?
If not, summers here and its all about safety and holidays! Get the lawn chair and the kiddie pool for your pup. It’s easy to get caught up in the picnics and festivities. We may even miss the signs of stress and the general safety of our dogs.
First, let’s talk signs of distress that may occur during the holidays, storms or fireworks, in a situation with too many kids and adults and even other dogs. Be sure to read the BEET. BEET stands for body, eyes, ears, and tail. It over simplifies canine body language but B gives you a starting point. Look for stiffness in the body or cowering and look at E for eyes, partially white eyes. Then look at E for ears. If they are tucked, your pup may be under stress. Finally the T in tail. A tail waving to high may mean trouble. Just like a tail too low. We want tail about neutral height and preferably wiggly summer time tail! Learn more about canine body language thanks to Victoria Stilwell.
1. Do NOT EVER leave your pet in the car. No, leaving the windows open does not work. Keep them at home or with lots of water and shade outside with you!
2. Leash your dog with ID tag at all times. More dogs are lost during holidays than any other time of the year.
3. Cooked bones are dangerous for dogs. They are usually thin enough to cause choking in and of itself but all cooked bones will splinter. No ribs off the grill and certainly none of these from the Dollar Tree.
4. Avoid leftovers. Tons of harmful chemicals lurk in those hot dogs and other processed foods. Not to mention the condiments we slather our food with. Think about the sodium, sugar, and uber fat load. Just skip it.
5. Train your dogs in advance summer events. Teach them to not jump on guests, not to beg for scraps at summer barbecues, and even to go to a kennel on cue in the event you or your pup needs break. Be sure that if someone leaves a lovely plate of hot dogs unattended, your dog won’t be the one to ruin the day. Happy Summer!
More Safety Tips
Here’s a list of some foods never to feed your dog for a quick reference. You can always check out the ASPCA’s Poison Control guide to unsafe foods for your dogs.
Skip These Foods for Your Pet:
- Chocolate, coffee, anything with caffiene
- Grapes and raisins
- Milk and dairy
- Onions, garlic, and chives
- Xylitol (an artifical sweetender)
- Yeast dough
- Cooked or smoked bones
- Corn on the cob (does not digest well!)
- Cat food
- Fatty food of any kind
- Fruits with pits
Always be prepared. Keep the number of your local vet, the closest emergency clinic, and the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center — (888) 426-4435 — where you know you can find it.