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Being Smart, Safe and Sane About Your Pets This 4th of July

July 1, 2010

It’s party time once again! Yep. July 4th is just around the corner. Mom, being a certified professional dog trainer, and yours truly, being a safe and sane but party-loving inquisitive canine thought it’d be the perfect time to send out some gentle reminders for helping to keep your pets safe during this boisterous celebration.

I used to be one of “those dogs” that would bark and run amok every time a firecracker or whatnot went off. Thanks to mom’s planning ahead and dog training approach I now enjoy when fireworks go off. This comes in handy not only for the 4th of July but for when our annual Ventura County Fair is underway, which is 10 days in August – they have an exciting fireworks show every night!

So, what is our plan for keeping me safe and having fun times during the 4th of July? The following are a few of the main points mom and dad like to cover here at our home.

  1. First, mom and dad stay with me here at home where it’s safe and where I feel most comfortable. I have it pretty good here so why go anywhere else? We’ll most likely go for walkies in da ‘hood, but that’s about it. Parks and beaches can be fun, but they’re often crowded, and many don’t allow us dogs. Plus, even with controlled chaos there’s lots of food left on the ground. And, you never know who might be setting something off that might unintentionally explode in my face! Plus, my fur is flammable, paws are tender to hot objects and I’m low to the ground – this can get risky.
  2. They make sure I’m all dressed for the occasion: This means collar and ID tag are on! Even if we’re not going anywhere I still wear my ID tag…just in case.
  3. If I’m in the yard, then they’re in the yard or keeping a watching eye on me and what’s going on in the neighborhood.
  4. If we watch TV or play music, it’s something I like too that often drowns out the noise of the explosions.
  5. If and when there’s an explosion  and I alert to the noise, they throw a little chicken party: “Yippee it’s fireworks!” Then give me a little piece of chicken (This is my favorite game!). If I’m running amok then they go to plan B: Interrupt and redirect! That’s when they give me something else to do to redirect my energy. Playing fetch is the ideal alternate behavior for me.

We hope that you and your family enjoy this special holiday weekend too. If you want moms point of view and additional training tips, check out our latest Dear Inquisitive Canine column that mom put together.

Hmm…I wonder what mom is going to barbecue this year? I wonder if I’ll get extra chicken? I wonder if we’re gonna watch a movie? Something for this inquisitive canine to ponder.


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