Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer, much like Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer. And this summer in the mitten- much like the winter- has been a weird one. We have had record few days in the 90s and a large number of mornings that started out in the 50s! The lakes were too cold to swim in, and the actual hot summer days have been so humid you just walk outside and start sweating.
All that aside, people still want to participate in classic holiday fun- the BBQ. Why shouldn’t Fido participate too? Well he should with a couple quick tips for keeping our furry friends safe.
Oh the BBQ food. It all smells so good. But cooked food from the grill can have bones that can hurt Fluffy’s insides, marinades that can damage the kidneys, or at the least cause a nasty case or diarrhea or vomiting. Or maybe your dog is like Reggie and just plain allergic to everything in site. Keep them away.
Parties can be chaos. This can be a perfect opportunity for your dog to plan their escape from the yard. Especially if they are not at their own house! They are wily, and many are good diggers.
It’s no secret Reggie loves the water. But he is getting older and doesn’t have the stamina he used to. I would never leave him unattended in water anyway, but this is especially important in a party situation. You might think with all the people around it’s no big deal- wrong! You wouldn’t do that with a child would you? Don’t do it with your dog. And don’t be shy about a canine life vest if your dog needs one.
There are some many things to get into at a party! Matches or lighter fluid contain cholates which can damage red blood cells and and cause difficulty breathing. Citronella candles, insect coils, and oils if ingested can cause stomach irritation and even central nervous system depression. If inhaled the oils could cause aspiration pneumonia. Short hair dogs dogs may need sunscreen but don’t ever apply human sunscreen- use a product made specifically for dogs. Don’t ever use insect repellant on dogs.
Going to and from BBQ destinations often means you need to stop and pick up something for the host, for yourself, drop something off, pick someone up…Never leave your dog in the car. Temperatures in a car can rise to deadly levels in as little as 15 minutes.
Assign someone to be the dog guardian. Have one person in charge of the dog for the course of the BBQ; they don’t refill the chip bowl or get more ice, they are only in charge of watching the dog, feeding the dog, picking up after the dog, etc. Likewise for the other host(s). They are not responsible for the dog, but are responsible for the chip bowl, the ice, etc. Or if you are the guest, take turns. This is especially important if you are in an unfenced area.