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Picnic and Party Safety Tips for Pet Owners

Summer is prime time for picnic and parties, especially with the July 4th holiday approaching. It’s a lot of fun to include your pet in the festivities, but make sure she stays safe. Use these suggestions from a Temecula vet to do just that.

Limit Table Scraps

Too many fatty table scraps will upset a pet’s stomach, potentially even leading to vomiting or diarrhea. Don’t let any picnic or partygoers slip your pet fatty scraps. Also keep in mind that bones are never a good treat to let a pet munch on—they can easily splinter or break, causing laceration or puncture hazards.

Watch for Other Harmful Foods

Many common party and picnic foods are actually toxic to pets: salty foods, onions, garlic, grapes, raisins, avocado, chocolate, and candy are only some of the most common offenders. Take care to have your pet avoid these foods at all costs, and check with your vet for a complete list of harmful human foods.

Swimming Precautions

Oftentimes, swimming is a common part of summertime picnics and parties. You might like to take your dog for a dip, but remember to do so cautiously. Not all dogs can swim, contrary to popular belief. Always stay in the water with your dog for support. Remember to rinse your dog’s coat out thoroughly after he’s out of the water, whether you’re swimming in a backyard pool or a public lake. Chlorine and salt water will irritate your pet’s skin and dry out the coat, so rinse her off with fresh water.

Heat and Sun Safety

It’s a good bet that your pet will be spending time outdoors in the hot weather and sun. Make sure she has plenty of fresh, cool water to drink at all times, and see that there’s a shady spot or two. Try applying a dog- or cat-specific sunscreen to exposed areas, like your pet’s nose and ear tips. Ask your Temecula vet for a recommendation.

Cocktail Caution

Will your summer picnic or party include alcoholic beverages? Remember that alcohol is extremely dangerous for pets—it affects pets the same way it affects us, only it takes much less to do serious organ damage. Take steps to have your pet avoid beer, liquor, wine, and champagne.

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