Fun 4th of July Ideas for Your Puppy

Mira Gibson

Grilling at the barbecue, basking the sunshine, and enjoying an elaborate fireworks show are among the many traditions that come with celebrating Independence Day! For Americans with new puppies, however, the 4th of July holiday can pose discomforts and dangers. 

Just because you’ve got a furry family member now doesn’t mean you need to forego the festivities this July 4th. But it does mean that you’ll have to modify the activities that your puppy participates in, and you may have to create a new tradition this year that will last for years to come—one that doesn’t involve exposing your dog to stress-inducing fireworks, hazardous foods, and environments that overstimulate to the point of anxiety.

In this article, PuppyBuddy will lay out fun ways to make the most out of Independence Day so that your puppy can have just as much fun as you!


Humans might need to incorporate elaborate activities into their 4th of July celebrations in order to have a blast, but puppies don’t need this. One of the greatest character traits that all dogs share is that they really don’t need much to stay entertained. A simple sprinkler can turn an outdoor get-together with friends into a source of joy for your puppy.

Set up some sprinklers outside in the yard. Choose sunny spots. Sprinklers are a great way to keep your puppy from overheating in the sunshine because by getting wet, your puppy will stay cool. If there are children at your Independence Day party, instruct them to be careful when jumping through the sprinkler with your puppy so that your fur baby doesn’t accidentally get stepped on. 

You’ll still need to keep an eye on your puppy while he plays, but the great upside is that a few sprinklers can keep him entertained for a nice chunk of time. Be sure to always have a bowl of cool water available to your puppy, who will still need to drink to help stay hydrated and cool.


We probably don’t have to tell you that puppies have a ton of energy. They also need a great deal of sleep, depending on their specific age. Younger puppies can easily sleep most of the day away while 6 month old puppies have no problem frolicking around for hours on end. Of course, the energy level of your puppy will also depend on his specific breed. But whether your puppy is a sporting dog or lap dog, all puppies love a good obstacle course. 

An obstacle course, or agility course, can be an easy-to-put-together DIY effort on your part. Of course, if you want to splurge by buying an agility course kit at your local pet store, that’ll work, too! The great thing about this is that agility courses provide mental stimulation in addition to physical exercise. 

If you would like to keep things DIY, look around your home for cardboard boxes, laundry baskets, and even extra PVC pipes. A basic agility course has tunnels, hurdles, and “weave poles,” which are stakes in the ground that the dog “weaves” between as he sprints. 

You’ll need plenty of space outside. Tape the cardboard boxes together to make a long tunnel. Make sure there’s enough room for your puppy to run into the tunnel and out of it. You can make the agility course a circular loop, so that your puppy runs through the tunnel then leaps over hurdles and finally weaves through the agility poles. 

This is a great bonding activity because once the agility course is set up, you’ll have to “train” your puppy through the course by coaxing him and rewarding him with treats. He’ll catch on quickly and before you know it, you’ll be able to jog beside him to encourage him as he runs through the course himself!


The cornerstone of the traditional 4th of July celebration is the crescendo of a nighttime fireworks display. Unfortunately, puppies as well as dogs of all ages should not be exposed to watching fireworks. Fireworks, as well as other loud noises and flashes of light, are terrifying to dogs. Fireworks can cause a great deal of anxiety, and even panic, in dogs. Even if your puppy is inside your home, if a fireworks display is too close to the home, they could become agitated, disturbed, or anxious from the noise. 

Whatever your daytime holiday plans are with your puppy, it’s a good idea to head home when night falls to make sure you have enough time to get your puppy safely tucked into your quiet home before any fireworks begin. If you happen to live close to where your town displays fireworks or if you live in a neighborhood that’s known for setting off their own street fireworks, then you’ll have to take extra precautions by making a very cozy and “sound proof” (if possible) den for your dog. Do not leave your puppy alone, even if the den you create, using his crate, is very cozy. 

We recommend that you choose the quietest room in your home to set up his crate. Lay thick blankets over the top, but make sure there’s adequate airflow. Provide comfortable blankets inside his crate, stuffed animals, and his favorite comfort toys. Even if your puppy ends up being fine with sitting on your lap as you watch a movie, you’ll want his safe crate to be ready in case he suddenly gets alarmed by the noise of fireworks nearby. 

As long as you take this precaution, your evening with your puppy can be filled with the joys of watching 4th of July movies, snuggling, and maybe even enjoying some homemade doggy treats. Mixing, baking, and freezing homemade dog treats is another great way to bond with your puppy!

how can I keep my puppy cool this summer


No matter what your plans are this Independence Day, bear the following two tips in mind that will help you keep your new puppy safe and happy:

  1. Use exercise to tire your puppy out both mentally and physically before the fireworks begin 
  2. Keep your puppy indoors with a “safe place” like his crate nearby at night 

Also, this year the 4th of July falls on a Tuesday, which means that the fireworks around town could occur throughout the weekend prior and into the week, and might even extend into the following weekend as neighbors “use up” their leftover fireworks. It’s a good idea to plan for this and make sure not to leave your puppy home alone during this week-long period. 

From everyone at PuppyBuddy, we wish you a fun, safe Independence Day!