Fireworks are Dangerous to Pets in More Ways Than You Think

Posted by Christy Caplan
Fireworks
Facebook/James Copp

Fireworks create chaos for our dogs. The Washington Post posted a great article about the "joys of summer" and this just isn't one of them for our family. The noise alone scares birds out of nests and some birds are literally known to drop out of the sky. The wild animals are absolutely affected by the loud booms and it's torture for some dogs. We literally leave Washougal and drive to a house we rent on Mt. Hood where there are no fireworks (the forest would burn down) or fewer loud booms.

All that aside, in addition to noise phobia, fireworks are toxic to dogs. The Spruce Pets interviewed a DVM about the toxicity.

"Firecrackers are similar to gunpowder, but they are more dangerous. While gunpowder contains potassium nitrate, carbon, and sulfur, firecrackers contain these ingredients plus additional coloring and explosive agents that are highly toxic. Firecrackers can also contain chlorates which oxidize the red blood cells; blood becomes brown as the iron in the blood's hemoglobin turns to rust. The rusty blood running through the dog's vessels causes the urine, gums and mucous membranes to turn slightly brown."

Fast forward to a PSA a dog owner posted on Facebook after his beloved Zoe passed away from ingesting the ash from fireworks. This is a statement from his Facebook page.

"Zoe chewed up used sparklers ash and died today. She was puking this morning and acting all odd. Couldn't walk or nothing so we took her to the vet. The doctors ran test and contacted the poison control center. They told us there's a chemical that was causing it And they tried to pump her stomach but the poison was too much and she died at 2:50 today. Word to the warning. Don't let your animals ingest burnt or unburnt fireworks. It's really poisonous to animals and there are absolutely no warnings on the box about it. The vets even looked it up to see if there was a warning on the box. she was only a year and a half old. We will never forget you and we miss you, R.i.P Zoe."

Another case was posted on Vet Candy about a dog that ingested sparklers and presented at the vet with acute barium poisoning. The dog lived and was discharged after 36 hours of treatment.  

Here's is the post from the pet owner.

Zoe chewed up used sparklers ash and died today. She was puking this morning and acting all odd. Couldn't walk or...

Posted by James Copp on Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Firework trash is everywhere the day after and it's better to keep your dog on a leash. Typically trying to care for your dog if they ingest fireworks is not something you can do at home. Your pet must be hospitalized and treated with IV fluids and medications. Similar to the symptoms Zoe had you need to watch out for tremors or seizures, shallow breathing, and jaundice, where the skin takes on a yellow tone. 

If large amounts of fireworks are ingested your dog could die from kidney failure. Take your dog to the vet if you are suspicious they got into any fireworks!

How do you keep your pets safe from fireworks? Please let us know in the comments. 

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Fireworks are Dangerous to Pets in More Ways Than You Think