Greyt Inspirations Life

A little about our life, our business and our pets.

Happy Independence Day!

dogsweaterpixbuddyboyWe’re coming up on the big Independence Day weekend.  For many people that means cookouts, hot dogs, hamburgers — all things dogs love.  It also usually means fireworks.  You know the drill, especially if you have a dog who’s sensitive to loud noises as I do.  My boy Beau becomes a basket case every year at this time.

There are a number of things you can do to help your dog get through the noise from fireworks and the other hazards of a 4th of July celebration:

*It is safer to keep your pet at home during Fourth of July celebrations instead of bringing him to your neighbor’s party. Keep your pet in the house rather than in your yard. He will be a lot happier indoors and not tempted to leap over a fence to find you.

*Dogs can be startled by the loud noise of fireworks.  Once the festivities begin keep your pet in a safe room where he can feel comfortable.  If he is crate-trained put him in his crate covered with a blanket to make him feel secure.

*Block outside sights and sounds by lowering the blinds and turning on the television.  Play soothing music in the background to counteract the cacophony during the “rockets’ red glare.”

*If your pet seems overly anxious, spend some time with your him, speaking soothingly to help them to relax.

*Avoid scraps from the grill. While tempting to our pets, any sudden change to your pet’s diet can cause stomach upset. In addition, certain foods like onions, avocado, grapes and raisins can be toxic.

*Human products can be dangerous to animals.  Avoid spraying your pet with insect repellent and only use special sunscreen that is intended for animal use. Keep your pets away from matches and lighter fluid. They can be extremely irritating to the stomach, lungs and central nervous system if ingested.

*Should your dog get scared, escape and run away, help find him with microchip identification.  Collars and tags can fall off so consider permanent ID with a microchip. Keep contact information current with your recovery service provider.  For more information and to enroll your pet in a 24 hour recovery service visit

4th-Dog_DTIf your dog is really scared by loud noises you may want to consider asking your vet for something safe to give your dog while fireworks are going off.  I haven’t had to do that for Beau but I do give him some valerian, an herbal remedy, from the drugstore.  It’s often used to help people relax or feel drowsy.  It seems to help Beau.  I have also been told that low doses of melatonin help some dogs.  I have a friend who is trying a D.A.P. diffuser this year for her German Shepherd.  She has neighbors who enjoy fireworks (she’s also afraid they’re going to burn down her house).  D.A.P. stands for dog appeasing pheromones.  These products work by diffusing pheromones into the air that are supposed to be calming for the the dog.  They’re being used in some animal shelters and places where dogs tend to be anxious.  They have been recommended for dogs who have phobias about fireworks and loud noises.

Remember that if your dog is scared he may act erratically.  If you have an outside door open, even for a moment, he could take off.  It’s best not to leave a frightened dog outside at all when fireworks are going off.  Some dogs will climb fences or escape from backyards when they’re scared.  Make sure that your dog is wearing some kind of good identification this weekend, just in case he does get loose.


While we are celebrating the 4th let’s also remember that the United States is home to some wonderful breeds of dogs that originated here.

American Dog Breeds:

An American Foxhound, one of the breeds which originated in the United States.

An American Foxhound, one of the breeds which originated in the United States.

American Foxhound — One of America’s native breeds, the American Foxhound is also one of our rarest. This tall hound sports a close, hard coat that can be any color. The American Foxhound’s origins date back to the early 1700’s in Virginia and Maryland. George Washington is not only the Father of our country but the father of the American Foxhound. As a master breeder he often referenced his hounds in his journals.

American Eskimo Dog — Contrary to popular belief, the American Eskimo Dog is not descended from working sled dogs. The “Eskie,” as it is nicknamed, originated in the Spitz family of dogs, also known as the Nordic breeds. In the past, it was called the American Spitz. During the 19th century, in this country, Eskie’s were most commonly found in communities with German immigrants. Later in that century, the Eskie became a popular dog for use in traveling circuses throughout the U.S. The AKC first registered this breed in 1995.

American Water Spaniel — The American Water Spaniel is the state dog of Wisconsin. The breed was developed primarily in the Great Lakes region of the United States in the mid 1800s. They were the first breed developed in this country as an all-around hunter that could retrieve from boats. The virtue of this sporting breed — its ability to swiftly, efficiently, and merrily retrieve game — has long been appreciated in the United States. This affectionate and easily trainable sporting breed was first registered with the AKC in 1940.

American Staffordshire Terrier — The American Staffordshire Terrier is considered an “all-American” dog. It has been developed since the early 1800’s and was instrumental in the success of farmers and settlers, and was used for general farm work, hunting wild pigs, bears, and other large game, guarding the homestead, and general companionship. Until the early 19th century, the Bulldog used for bullbaiting in England was more active and longer-legged than the breed as we know it today. It is thought that the cross of this older Bulldog and a game terrier breed created the Staffordshire Terrier. The breed was first registered with the American Kennel Club in 1936.

Boston Terrier — The state dog of Massachusetts, this breed is known as the “American gentleman” because of his calm disposition and formal black and white “tuxedo” markings. Developed in Boston, MA as his name suggests, he is a product of the English Bulldog and a white English Terrier. In 1889, a group of fanciers in Boston began showing the early ancestors of today’s Boston Terrier. The Boston Terrier was first registered by the AKC in 1893.

Chesapeake Bay Retriever — The state dog of Maryland, this true American breed is thought to have originated from two puppies that were rescued from an English shipwreck in 1807 off the coast of Maryland. In the late 1800s, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever was renowned for its ability to retrieve hundreds of waterfowl a day from the icy waters of the Chesapeake. The Chesapeake coat, which is very dense and has an oily texture, allows the dog to easily deal with extreme weather conditions. Its slightly wavy coat sheds profusely in the spring and requires daily brushing. The Chesapeake Bay Retriever was first registered with the AKC in 1878.

Plott — The state dog of North Carolina, powerful and well-muscled, the Plott can bring big game such as bear or boar to bay or tree with its determination, endurance and courage. Today Plotts are also used for coonhunting. The breed’s smooth, glossy coat can be any shade of brindle (a streaked or striped pattern of dark hair imposed on a lighter background), solid black or have a saddle or markings. This breed joins five other Coonhound breeds – Black and Tan Coonhounds, Redbone Coonhounds, American English Coonhounds, Bluetick Coonhounds and Treeing Walker Coonhounds – developed for hunting raccoons throughout early American history. Today, AKC holds competitive Coonhound events in which dogs compete in hunts for titles and prizes. Coonhounds are judged on their abilities to strike, run, and tree wild raccoons. In keeping with AKC coonhound regulations, there is no contact permitted between the hounds and the raccoons.

Other American Breeds include the Australian Shepherd, Cocker Spaniel, and Toy Fox Terrier.


July 3, 2009 - Posted by | dogs, Pets | , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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