Pet Tales

Keep pets safe and sane on Fourth of July

With Fourth of July on Wednesday, I thought I’d share some tips from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (  ) on how to keep your pets safe.

Be sure to keep food and drinks for people at barbecues away from your animals. These foods can be very dangerous to pets and should always be kept out of reach to them.

Do not apply any sunscreen or insect repellent products to animals, unless they are labeled specifically for use on animals.

Always keep matches and lighter fluid out of your pets’ reach. Certain types of matches contain chlorates, which could potentially damage blood cells and result in difficulty breathing — or even kidney disease in severe cases. Lighter fluid can be irritating to skin and if ingested , can produce gastrointestinal irritation and central nervous system depression.

Never use fireworks around pets! While exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns and/or trauma to the faces and paws of curious pets, even unused fireworks can pose a danger. Many types contain potentially toxic substances, including potassium nitrate, arsenic and other heavy metals.

Loud, crowded fireworks displays are no fun for pets, so please resist the urge to take them to Independence Day festivities. Instead, keep your dogs and cats safe from the noise in a quiet, sheltered and escape-proof area at home.

If your dog or cat ingests any potentially harmful products and you need emergency advice, contact the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435 or

If your pet is lost during Fourth of July, please call the volunteer line of the San Luis Obispo County Animal Shelter at 781-4413 or visit Also make sure to visit the shelter to look for your pet. The Animal Services shelter is at 885 Oklahoma Ave., off Highway 1 in San Luis Obispo.

Animal-related events

A Firecracker Boogie will be from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday at Biddle Park in Arroyo Grande. The event features performances by Dr. Danger, Code Blues, Stony Hunter and the Rockhounds and Formal Proof, a silent auction and barbecue. All proceeds benefit Woods Humane Society.

Central Coast Pug Rescue will hold an adoption event from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at Tails Pet Boutique at 745 Higuera St. in San Luis Obispo. Meet adoptable pugs and learn about volunteer opportunities. For more information, call 978-5888 or visit

Homeless Animal Rescue Team (HART) of Cambria is hosting a grand opening and ribbon cutting from noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday for its new location. The event will include live music, shelter tours, refreshments and more. HART is at 2638 Main St., Cambria. For more information, call 927-7377.

Through the month of June, Woods Humans Society is holding “name your own price” feline adoptions. All cats are spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped. Woods is at 875 Oklahoma Ave. in San Luis Obispo. For more information, call 543-9316 or visit

Dogs and owners are invited to “Goldens in the Park” from noon to 4 p.m. July 8 at Laguna Lake Park in San Luis Obispo. The event includes dog events, vendors and food booths and is a fundraiser for Woods Humane Society and Animal Services Adoption Partners (ASAP). The event is free and open to all dog breeds. For more information, visit

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