With summer just around the corner and lockdown measures easing slightly for garden visits, having a barbecue is a welcome relief to humans. But what are the dangers facing your pets? Use this guide to help keep your pet safe around the BBQ this year so they have can have as much fun as you!

Be careful what you feed your pet

BBQ smells are pretty much every pet’s dream, but be cautious when giving scraps to your dog. Here are some of the potential food pitfalls to avoid:

  • Corn on the cob: Dogs can’t digest the cob which can block their intestines.
  • Meat: Be cautious because a lot of BBQ meat has a high fat content.
  • Chicken bones: Cooked, these are incredibly dangerous for pets as they can break and splinter in their throats/stomachs.
  • Alcohol: Toxic to dogs. Make sure your guests know not to leave glasses and bottles unattended.  
  • Garden plants: Be mindful that some garden plants are poisonous to dogs should they ingest them.

Ensure the BBQ area is tidy

Not the first thing on everyone’s mind while they’re enjoying a BBQ but it is crucial for your pet. Rubbish needs to be disposed of safely- skewers that smell meaty will be seem like a treat to your pet but will cause serious harm. Tidy away those greasy bits of tin foil and utensils so there’s no temptation- and be wary that bits of fat dripping on gravel or pebbles will still seem alluring to your pet and will do some damage to their digestive system.

Keep your pet away from the BBQ itself

During and after use make sure your pet does not have access to the BBQ. Burn injuries are one of the most common seen by vets at this time of year so make sure they cannot get their paws or noses near the heat. Keep the lid shut after and don’t leave your pet unattended around it to avoid problems.

General safety around the garden

During those warm days be wary of how much time your pet spends in the sun- soaring temperatures might be nice for us but can cause heat stroke in your dog. This condition is life-threatening: to avoid this, give pets a cool spot in the house and make sure there’s water available at all times. Greenhouses can be particularly dangerous to cats and dogs alike so ensure conservatories and greenhouses are off-limits to pets. Use a sun cream on your pet. It might sound silly but cats and dogs are both susceptible to sunburn, so as well as providing a spot in the shade consult your vet about the right sun cream for your pet.

With people coming and going from the garden, your gates should always be secure to ensure that your dog is not able to escape in the commotion of the party. On this note, make sure guests are aware of where your pet is at all times. Vets warn of the risk of traumatic injuries like broken legs and tails sustained from patio doors or other garden furniture.

Keeping all this in mind will mean that both you and your pets can enjoy the safest and best summer possible!

Sarah Worgan
Sarah is currently a doctoral student and she has always been an animal lover. She grew up in the Cotswolds so she loves escaping the town and being outdoors. Several years ago, Sarah adopted two rescue greyhounds who continue to take her on new adventures.

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