After what always appears to be a long winter, the month of March seems to give us all a bounce to our step. March designates not only the coming of spring but also St. Patrick’s Day, which is yet another day we get to celebrate. If you have a dog, you may have a few concerns about his or her safety. Let me assure you that you and your dog don’t have to live in Ireland to enjoy this fun holiday. Here are a few tips and suggestions.

Parades and Parties

We all love a good parade, right? Your dog may even enjoy the bright colors, friendly people and all around excitement that parades bring. However, you dog may also be a little frightened of all the strange activity. Unless you and your dog are in the habit of frequenting these types of activities, you may want to take your dog out a little prior to the actual day so he or she can get used to the festivities.

If your dog is not the social butterfly you would like him or her to be, consider avoiding the parade or leave him or her at home. The same can be said for parties. If you’re having a party in your home, provide your dog with a quiet space where he or she can relax and avoid the noise and strange faces. Trust me, your dog really won’t mind. I have found that when my dog wants to join the crowd, she comes out on her own.

Everyone is Green

What is St. Patty’s Day without the color green? You may want to go all out this year and color your dog green so he

St Patricks Day dog - french bulldog

St Patricks Day dog – french bulldog

or she matches your attire. This is fine as long as you do it safely. If you’re putting dye or green powder on your dog, make sure it’s safe and nontoxic. If there’s one thing you can be sure of it’s that your dog will be sniffing and licking his or her fur so make it safe.

Some dog owners prefer to dress their dog in green clothing. Only do this if it’s something that makes your dog comfortable. While a dog may not react negatively around its owner, the same cannot always be said about strangers.

St. Patty’s Day = Delicious Food

When we think of St. Patrick’s Day, usually the first thing that comes to mind is green beer and corned beef! Both of these things can be dangerous and even toxic if consumed by your dog. Under no circumstances should your dog be fed beer or any kind of alcoholic beverages. Alcohol can make your dog very sick if not worse. If you really want to make him or her part of festivities, consider buying him or her a doggie treat or something you know the dog will enjoy.

Corned beef is probably one of the saltiest meats we eat and, while it’s delicious, it’s a very unhealthy choice for your dog. Too much sodium is not good for anyone but is particularly bad for dogs.

Despite these few warnings, there are still ways you and your four-legged friend can enjoy St. Patrick’s Day and still have a safe and fun day! Perhaps he or she would enjoy a play date with a familiar four-legged friend in the neighborhood. Happy St. Patty’s Day!