Keeping your dog safe at home

Ensuring safety for your dog is an important part of being a pet owner, particularly when you are out with your dog or they are at home alone.

Take a look at some important tips to keep your dog and your family safe during your adventures together.

Dog safety for kids 

Children must be supervised closely when around dogs, especially when playing. It’s important to teach your child to always be gentle, to maintain a safe distance and to never interrupt a dog who is sleeping or eating. Even if you don’t have a dog at home, it is still important to teach your child to be safe around dogs.  

Dog walking safety

Visibility and control are key for keeping both you and your dog safe while walking.

By walking your dog on a lead, you can ensure that they are comfortably restrained and close to you. Even if your dog is usually slow and gentle, it’s important to keep them in on a lead in-case you need to protect them from another dog or a vehicle.

When walking your dog at night, it’s wise to take safety precautions to ensure you’re both visible to others. Stay on the footpath and consider wearing a jacket or vest with reflective panels so cars can see you, and a reflective jacket, tag or collar for your dog. Keeping your dog on a lead will prevent them from chasing after any wildlife or getting lost in the dark.

dog safety tips 2
dog safety tips 2

Dogs and bone safety

Giving a dog a bone may seem like a natural thing to do, but are bones safe for dogs? Feeding bones can cause many potential problems. Cooked bones, such as ham bones, are not safe for dogs, as they may splinter and cause injury. Raw bones are also a potential risk for dogs and their owners, as raw meat diets can be contaminated with bacteria such as Salmonella and Campylobacter which can infect both dogs and people.  

Speak to your vet for advice before you give bones to your dog to better understand the safety risks.

Pool safety for dogs

Most dogs love to swim, but there are some key safety tips to remember when letting your dog swim in a pool.  

  • Ensure you are always there to watch your dog. Accidents do happen, so it’s important to watch your dog when they are in the water.
  • Ensure the pool has steps with grip or a ramp, as dogs don’t always find it easy to get in and out of pools.
  • Always keep your pool securely fenced with the gate closed. Be wary of any soft pool covers that may trick your dog into thinking the pool is a solid surface.

Dog park safety 

Visiting the local dog park is a great way to exercise your dog and teach them how to socialise. While it’s a fun day out for you and your pet, there are some safety tips to be mindful of when you visit one:  

  • Keep your dog on a lead unless you’re in a lead-free area. While letting your dog off the lead lets them explore, it can also be dangerous if the park is near a road, is unfenced, or other dogs are acting in an aggressive way within the park.
  • When in a lead-free area, make sure your dog can respond to commands like ‘come’ and ‘stay’ before letting them off the lead.
  • Ensure your dog is up to date with their vaccinations before visiting a dog park.
  • Make sure your dog is protected against parasites before visiting a dog park. Make it easy with NexGard SPECTRA®, the most complete protection from fleas, ticks, mites, heartworm and intestinal worms, all in one tasty monthly chew.  
dog safety tips 3
dog safety tips 3

Dog hearing protection

Some dogs become very anxious when they hear loud noises. Building sites, fireworks and other loud noises can startle your dog and make them uncomfortable.

In some cases, it may even be necessary to consider using a form of dog ear protection like dog ear muffs. These are designed to cover your pet’s ears, staying in place to block loud noises. Speak to your vet for advice if you are concerned about your dog’s reactions to noise.

First aid for pets

The First Aid app for your pets includes over 130 essential first aid articles for pet owners. This free app was created to ensure you are better prepared to recognise an emergency situation and can act quickly with effective first aid during the critical minutes before you get to a veterinary clinic.

Search for First Aid for Pets Australia in your App Store or Google Play.


  • Is chocolate safe for dogs?

    We love it, but chocolate contains theobromine and this is dangerous to dogs. Cocoa powder, dark chocolate and cooking chocolate are the most toxic forms, but even licking a substantial part of the chocolate icing from a cake can make a dog unwell. See your vet if your dog does manage to feast on some chocolate.

  • What plants are toxic for dogs?

    As dogs often like to chew plants, make sure you avoid plants known to be toxic – some examples include crocuses, cycads, azaleas, tulips and daffodils.

  • Are fertilisers dangerous to dogs?

    Some fertilisers may be dangerous to dogs, so in the backyard make sure fertiliser containers are sealed, stored out of your dog's reach and are used strictly according to the manufacturer's directions. Dogs love 'blood and bone', even if it smells terrible to us, so keep them away from fertilisers to protect them from getting ill.



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