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  • Writer's pictureTraci Wilkerson Steckel

San Diego PRIDE Pet Safety

Traci's Paws Spokesdogs Lexi and Emee show their pride with rainbow cowboy hats.

As we start celebrating PRIDE in San Diego, it is going to be another record-breaking year for people visiting our town, attendees at the parade, and walking in the parade, all in support of our LGBTQIA + community!

"The Paws Spot" has included a few things you’ll need to prepare for, including loud noises, large crowds, and high temps.

This year, according to the San Diego Pride Council, our Pride parade is expecting over 300,000 spectators and hundreds of organizations walking in the parade, including many pet rescue organizations and just people in general who want to walk with their dogs.

The parade is kicked off with Dikes on Bikes on some spectacular bikes, but they are very loud! Please make sure your pets are on-leash close to you and not on retractable leashes. This keeps your pets close by if they try to run in fear of the loud bikes and get lost in the crowds of people, which is also unnerving for many dogs. Please do not use retractable leashes as they can easily get caught around people’s legs, cause serious injury from burns, and tripping people to the ground.

Make sure to observe the safety of your pets and parade-goers.

This weekend San Diego is expected to have high temperatures. Even if the air doesn't feel hot to you, please remember that air temperature is different than ground temperature. For example.... with an air temp of 77 degrees, the asphalt in the sun can be expected to reach 125 degrees or higher! This will definitely burn your pets’ paws (literally burning the skin of the pads off), causing extreme pain and possible infection.

Photo of a dog paw that has been burned and blistered from walking on cement that was too hot.
Burned Dog Paw

A good rule of thumb is to put the back of your hand on the ground for 5 seconds. If you cannot keep it down, you need to make sure that your dog’s paws don’t stay on the ground, either.

For people with dogs walking, please make sure they wear boots. You can always have your dog wear these around the house to get used to wearing them at events. If at all possible, put your dogs in wagons, strollers, and slings. This keeps them up and off the ground. Be sure you have a wagon to try and attach an umbrella for shade, and of course, bring a lot of water for your pet to drink during the event.

Traci's Paws Spokesdog Emee the Chi loves her stroller!

With hundreds of organizations walking, it can last for hours which is fun for us but not always fun for pets. Please be a responsible pet parent and plan to leave early to ensure your pet is safe and happy.

For those of you for the long haul, always remember to check the ground where you’ve moved to and use the “hand check” for your pet’s paws.

If you go to a restaurant or bar, make sure you choose one with a pet-friendly patio and make sure your pet does not have access to human food or alcohol. These can be very toxic for your pets.

It will be such an amazing pet-friendly weekend celebrating Pride in San Diego, but please make sure that you are prepared to ensure your pet is the safest and happiest throughout!

Brunette lady holding a dachshund in one arm and a chihuahua in the other arm. Both dogs are wearing a rainbow and glitter hat.
Founder Traci Wilkerson Steckel with the Traci's Paws spokesdogs.

Happy Pride from our founder

Traci Wilkerson Steckel and the

Traci's Paws Spokesdogs Emee the Chi and the late Lexi the Dachs!!

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