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Humane Society of Greater Dayton
Jun 29

Keep Pets Safe This Fourth of July

Dog-Fourth-of-JulyThe Fourth of July is just around the corner! With this holiday, you may be thinking of cookouts, lounging outside with friends and family and of course fireworks. Although this holiday can be relaxing and fun for your family, it can be stressful and scary for your pet. Here are a few tips to keep your pet relaxed and healthy during your Fourth of July festivities.

Avoid the Fireworks

Not only can loud fireworks scare your pets, making them more likely to run away or hide, the use of home fireworks can pose the risk of burns to your curious pets. Many fireworks contain toxic substances that could be lethal if ingested. If your pet is scared of fireworks, try to make the evening as calm as possible for them. Keep them at home and don’t take them to Fourth of July festivities. Make sure to keep them in an escape-proof area where they can feel safe and out of harm’s way. Play some calming music to drown out the boom of the fireworks and provide them with some familiar items such as their bed or toys to let them feel comforted.

ID Your Pets

With so much commotion and loud noises associated with the Fourth of July, pets may run away or become lost in an attempt to hide. Make sure your pets stay safe and are returned to you if they become lost. Have an identification collar on your pets that clearly has a number to call if they are found. In addition, it is important to microchip your pets. Microchipping your pet takes just minutes to do. It is just a little chip (the size of a grain of rice) that goes under your pet’s skin. If your pet arrives to a shelter or vet’s office, the chip can be scanned and your contact information will pop up allowing them to notify you that they found your pet.

Don’t Leave Alcohol Unattended

Alcohol can be poisonous to your pets. If it is consumed, your pet can become very intoxicated, weak, depressed or even go into a coma. In severe cases, respiratory failure can occur and may even result in death.

Watch What They Eat

With so many cookouts planned for the Fourth, it is easy for your pets to hop up and grab themselves a special treat. It is also more tempting to feed your pets a scrap or two from your plate so they feel part of the festivities. Resist these temptations. By keeping your pets away from raw foods and by feeding them their normal diet, you are helping your pet’s digestive system. Changing even one meal for your pet can give them diarrhea or severe indigestion. Plus, there are many common foods that people eat such as onions, chocolate, avocados, grapes and raisons that can be very toxic to animals.

Avoid the Repellent

Bugs can be a nuisance to you and your pet while enjoying the outdoors. However, don’t be tempted to apply bug or insect repellent to your pet unless it specifically says that it is pet-friendly. If your pet ingests this product, they can suffer many side effects such as drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy or excessive thirst. Also products containing DEET can lead to neurological problems in your pets. These same issues can also arise with the use of sunscreen, so please make sure anything you apply to your pet is specifically pet-friendly.


Do you have a question for Brian? E-mail him at Brian Weltge is the President and CEO of the Humane Society of Greater Dayton. The Humane Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to building loving relationships between people and pets. Founded 115 years ago, it is the largest and most established no-kill animal welfare agency in the area. It focuses on pet adoptions, eliminating pet overpopulation, providing education and ensuring the humane treatment of animals. For more information about the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, call 937- 268-PETS (7387) or visit

Mar 24

Why Rabbits Make Amazing Pets

HSGD-3144432As we get closer to Easter it is tempting to splurge on a cute and cuddly bunny as a gift for your children. We encourage all potential adopters to understand that rabbits require a commitment and can live for around 10 years when cared for properly. Don’t adopt a rabbit on a whim. Adopt a rabbit because you love rabbits and are willing to put in the commitment and love needed to give them a great forever home. If you can’t commit to a long-term pet, we recommend maybe giving your child a chocolate rabbit or a stuffed rabbit toy for Easter as an alternative. 

Many people don’t realize that the Humane Society of Greater Dayton works with all types of animals. In fact, we have a rabitat at our shelter with some amazing bunnies and rabbits up for adoption. Rabbits can make amazing pets and can be trained similar to cats. If you have never considered adopting a rabbit before, check out these great reasons why a rabbit could make a great pet for your family!

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Feb 6

How Your Cat Shows You Love

cat on backThey’re furry, they’re cuddly and most importantly they’re cute! Although they express love differently than humans, our cats show love to us in many different ways.  How do your cats say I love you? Here are a few behaviors common in cats who are showing love and affection to their family.


A cat’s purr can mean a variety of things from happiness to genuine concern. Cats use purrs as another form of communication with humans. In fact, many experts believe that a cat’s purr is a form of submission letting both people and other animals know they offer no sort of threat. Either way, we like to think of purring as a little smile from our pets letting us know they are here. 

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Feb 5

Unconditional Love: The Ultimate Lesson from Pets

dogwithmanWith Valentine’s Day approaching, the planning is underway to give your loved ones flowers, candies, a night on the town and more, but what is Valentine’s Day really about? To me, it is about unconditional love. It is a time to come together and celebrate everything that makes that someone in your life so special.

With all the hype around the holiday, it is easy to get lost in the gifts and presents, but if you need a little inspiration or a way to remember what true love is, look to your pets. Pets are amazing creatures that show unconditional love to us on a daily basis. They are pure and loving and we can learn a lot from them to strengthen our own relationships in life. Here are just a few examples how their unconditional love can help improve our bonds with one another.


Facing Hardships

Animals have a way of looking fear in the eyes. Take rescue dogs for example. These dogs literally go into devastated areas sniffing out those in need of help. They do not falter under pressure. They do not run away from that which they fear. Instead, their sole purpose is to help someone in need. If you are having a disagreement in your relationship, take inspiration from these fearless pets. Rather than sweeping your issues under the rug, face them head on. Sit calmly and discuss the problems at hand. In the long run, your relationship will be stronger.

Showing Enthusiasm

Let’s face it; it’s easy to tell when a dog is excited. Their tail starts wagging. They can barely sit still. Their tongue hangs out of their mouth. They are genuinely focused on you. All they want to do is show you how excited they are because you’re in their life. No, you don’t have to wave your arms around or stick out your tongue to greet your significant other, but when they arrive home try to stop what you’re doing to focus on them for a few minutes. What says unconditional love more than your undivided attention and true interest in what is happening in their life? 

Being Loyal

Pets are as loyal as can be. They are here to support you, be your comfort and help you stand tall. They will sit beside you when you feel sick. They will walk beside you when you need a friend. They just want to give you the support and love you need. When your partner is in need, you should be supportive and loyal to them. Stand beside them. Hold them up. Be their rock in times of trouble and cheerleader in times of joy.

So, as this Valentine’s Day creeps closer and closer, try to drown out the hype that revolves around the holiday and focus on what truly matters. Look down to your pets for one of the best lessons life can give you, a true example of unconditional love.


Do you have a question for Brian? E-mail him at Brian Weltge is the President and CEO of the Humane Society of Greater Dayton. The Humane Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to building loving relationships between people and pets. Founded 115 years ago, it is the largest and most established “no-kill” animal welfare agency in the area. It focuses on pet adoptions, eliminating pet overpopulation, providing education and ensuring the humane treatment of animals. For more information about the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, call 937-268-PETS (7387) or visit

Nov 16

Remember Your Pets This Thanksgiving

dog thanksgiving turkey

Although some have overlooked it, we at the Humane Society are excited to celebrate Thanksgiving this Thursday! Spending a day with our loved ones is something we cherish, but we want to encourage all of you to not overlook your pets on this day of thanks. Please keep your pets in mind especially when it comes to preparing your traditional Thanksgiving feast. Although some food items may be a staple to your family around the dinner table, they can be harmful to your pets. Here are a few things to keep in mind this Thanksgiving.

Give Them a Safe Haven

A full house of family and friends may be overwhelming to your pet. Make sure to have a safe place for your pets to retreat to if they feel scared. Set a room aside for them that is quiet and free of people. You can also have some calming music playing in the room to help your pet tune out the noise from your party. Make sure to have things that are familiar to your pet in the room including their bed, toys, food and water.

Watch for Bones

Your pet may like a nibble or two of turkey this Thanksgiving and that is OK. However, make sure that your turkey is fully cooked and boneless. Raw or undercooked turkey can hold salmonella bacteria, which can be harmful to your pet. Small bones can also be a choking hazard for your pet if consumed. In fact, both turkey and ham bones can splinter in your dog’s digestive tract, which can lead to an emergency trip to your vet. Dispose of bones carefully and keep them away from your pets!

Be Aware of Spices

Sage can make any ho-hum stuffing taste amazing, but this spice along with others contain essential oils and resins that can make your pet’s stomach upset if eaten in large quantities. Cats are very sensitive to these essential oils. In addition, that nutmeg that adds something special to your pumpkin pie, can cause seizures or central nervous system problems in your dog.

Say No to Dough

When it comes to raw dough, simply tell your pets no. When a pet eats raw dough, their natural body temperature causes the dough to rise in their stomachs. As the dough expands, the dog may experience things such as severe abdominal pain, bloating and even vomiting, which can become life-threatening. If your pet accidentally eats dough, contact your vet immediately.

Don’t Overindulge

With so many yummy treats available this Thanksgiving, remember that moderation is key. It is completely OK to give your pets a few nibbles of Thanksgiving dinner, but too much of a good thing could lead to stomach upset or diarrhea for your pet. A great way to include your pets would be to give them a special pet-friendly chew when your family sits down for dinner. Or, better yet, fill your pet’s Kong with a little bit of the Thanksgiving meal (go for turkey, sweet potato or green beans). This way you can avoid them begging for scraps at the dinner table and they can enjoy a little of the meal without overindulging! 

ID Your Pets

The stress from holidays can make a scared pet bolt right out of an open door. Make sure your pets have proper identification at all times. Have an identification tag with contact information on them so if they get out they can be identified. In addition, get your pets microchipped. If their collar breaks away, they can still be identified and returned to you if found. 

Check out our cat and dog safety guides now to keep your pets safe this holiday season!