Keeping Your Pet Safe During Memorial Day Festivities

| Richard Rowlands

Keep your pets comfortable & calm during the Memorial Day festivities with these helpful tips, covering everything from cookout safety to comfortable travel & more.


Memorial Day is a time for remembrance and celebration, marking the unofficial start of summer with barbecues, pool parties, and fireworks. But amidst the festivities, it's crucial to consider the safety of our pets.

In this post, we'll share some practical tips to help you keep your pet safe during the Memorial Day celebrations. From food and drink precautions to dealing with fireworks and crowd noise, here's what to consider when it comes to keeping your furry friend healthy and happy during the holiday.

The Dangers of Food and Drinks

Memorial Day festivities often include a spread of tasty foods. But while sharing with your pet may be tempting, it's important to understand what's safe for them. Some fruits are safe for dogs and cats, including apples and bananas. But others like grapes and raisins are highly toxic to pets.

When it comes to vegetables, options like carrots and cucumbers are safe for pets, but onions and garlic are toxic and can cause serious health issues. Beyond fruits and vegetables, many traditional barbecue foods like hot dogs, burgers, and ribs can be too rich or fatty for pets, potentially leading to digestive issues.

Alcoholic beverages pose another risk. Pets are much smaller than humans and their bodies process alcohol differently, making them more susceptible to alcohol poisoning. Even the smallest amount can lead to vomiting, mobility issues, or even death.

To ensure your pet's safety during your Memorial Day celebration, it's vital to keep food and drinks out of their reach. Make sure to ask your guests not to feed your pets any table scraps or leave their drinks unattended. To keep your pets safe, supervise them closely while celebrating and prevent them from consuming anything dangerous. That way, you can have a relaxing barbecue with the peace of mind that your pet is protected.

Dealing with Crowds, Noise, and Fireworks

Memorial Day celebrations often involve large gatherings and fireworks. While these can be enjoyable for us, the noise, bustle, and bright lights can be overwhelming for pets. And the constant activity, unfamiliar faces, loud noises, and fireworks can lead to anxiety and stress.

To help your pet cope with the crowds, noise, and fireworks:

  • Keep them indoors.


    The safest place for your pets during a firework display or a large gathering is indoors. This can help muffle the sound and protect them from any stray fireworks or overwhelming situations.

  • Create a quiet, safe space.


    Designate a room or area in your home as a

    safe space for your pet

    . Fill it with their favorite toys, a comfortable bed, and fresh water. This can serve as a retreat for your pet when the noise and activity become too much.

  • Ensure they're securely contained.

    If your pet is particularly anxious, consider using a pet crate or playpen to provide a secure space. Make sure they have access to plenty of fresh water and a cozy resting place.

  • Provide distractions.

    You can use toys, treats, or calming music to distract your pet from the noise and help them focus on something else other than the overwhelming sounds and activities.

  • Stay calm.


    Your pet will look to you for cues on how to react. By staying calm and reassuring them, you can help your pet feel safer.

Water Safety During Memorial Day Celebrations

Memorial Day celebrations often include fun water activities. Whether it's a refreshing dip in the pool, a relaxing trip to the lake, or a day at the beach, these activities can be a source of enjoyment for everyone. But as pet owners, it's important to remember that water environments can pose certain risks to our furry friends.

Not all pets are natural swimmers. Even those that are adept at swimming can sometimes find themselves in challenging situations in the water. The unfamiliar environment, the waves, or even the depth can be overwhelming for them. That's why it's crucial to always supervise your pets around water – regardless of their swimming abilities.

For added safety, consider using a pet life jacket, especially if you're near large bodies of water. Life jackets can provide an extra layer of safety and help your pet stay afloat if they become tired or overwhelmed. In addition, make sure there's a safe and easy way for your pet to exit the water. This could be a gently sloping bank, a set of wide, shallow steps, or a specially designed pet ramp.

Ensuring Comfortable Travel for Your Pet

If your Memorial Day plans involve traveling, it's vital to ensure your pet's comfort and safety during the journey. Traveling can be a stressful experience for pets, with unfamiliar environments, changing routines, and long periods of confinement.

Whether you're traveling by car, plane, or train, there are several steps you can take to make the journey safer and more comfortable for your furry friend:

  • Visit the vet before you leave.


    Before traveling, make sure your pet is up-to-date on all their vaccinations. Additionally, consult with your vet to ensure they're healthy enough for the journey.

  • Pack the essentials.


    Make sure to bring your pet's favorite blanket, toys, food, water, and any other essential items. This can offer them comfort and a feeling of familiarity even though they may not be used to traveling.

  • Never leave your pet alone in a parked car.

    Even with the windows cracked

    , the temperature inside a car can rise rapidly, putting your pet at risk of heatstroke or even death.

  • Use a well-ventilated, secure pet carrier.


    If you're traveling by car, a pet carrier can keep your pet safe and contained. This can help prevent your pet from becoming a distraction while driving and protect them in case of an accident.

  • Take regular breaks during your journey.


    Give your pet a chance to go for a quick walk, take a drink, and relieve themselves. These breaks can help reduce stress and prevent discomfort for your pet.

Are You and Your Pet Ready for Memorial Day?

While we celebrate and remember this Memorial Day, it's important to prioritize the safety and comfort of our pets as well. Whether you're grilling at home, lounging by the pool, or hitting the road, keeping your pet's well-being in mind is essential.

From understanding the dangers of certain foods and drinks to ensuring travel safety, every step you take contributes to a more enjoyable and stress-free holiday for your pet. Here's to a safe and happy Memorial Day!

Unexpected accidents and illnesses don't just happen around the holidays. Help protect your pet and budget year-round with coverage through AKC Pet Insurance (underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company). Get a quote today!

richard rowlands
Richard Rowlands

Richard has shared his life with pets since childhood, and currently has a rescue cat and dog. He works with veterinarians and pet businesses to improve their content. To find out more, please visit his [website](