Tips To Keep Your Long Weekend Fun and Pet-Friendly!


Seems like everyone I talk to they are either going camping, having a big BBQ, watching fireworks, or going on a road trip this Canada Long Weekend. And soon our American friends will be doing the same for the 4th of July! Bringing your pet with you can either be the BEST experience or the WORST depending on how well prepared you are! There is no reason that this weekend should turn into an emergency vet visit. Here are some easy to follow tips to keep your pet safe during the long weekend!

  • Don’t allow random people to feed your pet. People are out and about with alcohol and potentially dangerous foods that make cause your pet to get sick, and lets face it, it’s hard not to give handouts to a cute face! If you can’t keep a close eye on your pet leave them indoors where its cool and quiet.
  • If its hot, make use of sunscreen. Pets with really white or pink areas/features need to be protected too during the heat. White cats, Pit Bulls, Staffordshires, Doxies, etc are some of the few that need to be covered up. If you can’t find an appropriate pet-brand sunscreen you can use some human ones if: there is no zinc oxide; SPF 15 or higher; waterproof; includes UVA and UVB protection; and fragrance free. Bare areas as well as those white/pink areas need to be covered. Repeat as necessary.
  • Be careful with your pet around insect repellants as they use harsh chemicals which may cause some unwanted issues.
  • Matches, lighter fluid, and citronella candles are frequently used on trips. They can also be quite toxic to your pets, better to just keep away.
  • Stay away from fireworks! If your pet is an anxious one to begin with consult with your vet on any medication or natural remedies that may make the fireworks easier to handle. For dogs you may also consider the use of a Thundershirt.
  • Keep a steady fill of water in their bowls. With all the site-seeing, walking, hiking, and heat that can be expected on the typical long weekend in the summer we can’t expect our pets to go without excess amounts of water. If you plan on doing big hikes, a great way to pack water for your dog and you is the use of a camelback. Jugs can be hard to carry and camelbacks allow you to spray water into your pet’s mouth frequently without having to stop too long. Just make sure the holding pouch is large enough for two!
  • If your pet does get heat-exhaustion, it’s a good idea to submerge their paws in water and that is where temperature enters and exits the body readily. Don’t soak your pet but let them stand in a creek, river, or cold bath.
  • If you are planning on being in a very busy area this long weekend, make sure your pet has all of it’s ID tags on. God forbid something should go wrong and you lose your pet at least someone will be able to identify him/her.
  • DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT leave your pet in the car for any length of time even in mild-warm weather. New studies show that within 10 minutes your car can get as hot as your oven, and we ain’t makin’ no pet cookies in the car! If you see another pet in someone else’s car and you feel its just too warm and worried about ventilation phone the local SPCA, RCMP, or city police. And I’ll just stick my neck out here and say that if the pet’s vitals are clearly no good–break the window. No air+no water+heat=dead pet.
  • Be careful if giving your pet any scraps off of the BBQ. Grilled onions, garlic, etc can cause potentially dangerous gastro issues.
  • If going to the beach be careful that your dog does not get exhausted while swimming. Give them breaks and always keep an eye on them when they are in the water alone.
  • Be mindful of the areas you are taking excursions through. Some areas are heavily tick and parasite infested.
  • Last tip–have some fun:P





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