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Family Watchdog
JULY means half the year is here or over, depending on how you look at it. July holds many great things, great weather, get-togethers and of course, 4th of July. It would be a great time to check in with some firework safety. (National Council on Fireworks Safety) And please remember to be fair to neighbors and stop lighting off loud firecrackers at the time given by your state. You can call your local police station to see what times fireworks are allowed to be shot off. And another thing, please watch children closely, even with sparklers. The fourth of July is the number one day of the year that children get serious burns.
Family  July is also "Make a Difference to a Child Month". Here are some simple things you can do to make a difference.

Support an organization that supports children. (YMCA, school, boy scouts) Spend quality time with your child or a child that needs some attention. Give them a hug, take a walk with them, just let them know that they are special. Volunteer in your community with cleaning up parks or serving lunches to kids in need. Another great place to make an impact on a child in the homeless shelter (or other shelters that help families). Social Wellness is also highlighted during the month of July. Did you know socially isolated people are more susceptible to illness and have a death rate two to three times higher than those who are not socially isolated? To learn more about Social Wellness, please check out the following website:

Ever thought of becoming a Foster Parent? One of our staff members recently became a licensed foster care parent. “I never knew just how many kids in my own county that need a home. There are kids in facilities that are not there because they failed the system, the system failed them. There are not enough homes for children to be placed in. For every news story you read about a child being abused – that child goes into foster care, possibly for a very long time. It's rewarding knowing you can help a child grow and nourish them.”

Want to know more about becoming a foster parent? Click here

There is also a program CASA to help with children– What is CASA? (Taken from

Every day in this country, 1,900 children become victims of abuse or neglect, and four of them will die. Every day. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for Children is a network of 951 community-based programs that recruit, train and support citizen-volunteers to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children in courtrooms and communities. Volunteer advocates—empowered directly by the courts—offer judges the critical information they need to ensure that each child's rights and needs are being attended to while in foster care.
Volunteers stay with children until they are placed in loving permanent homes. For many abused children, a CASA volunteer is the only constant adult presence in their lives.
Hot Sun  With the heat index being very high, and drought warnings all over, we want to remind you to STAY HYDRATED and cool. Kids, Elderly and Pets all need access to cool water and shady area. Also, do NOT LEAVE KIDS or pets in a car! We have seen so many sad news stories in the media lately regarding children and pets being left in a car. If you see a child in a hot car, what should you do?
*disclaimer – this is in regards to an emergency and we will not be held accountable for any legal trouble that may arise*

First, call 911.

See if car doors are unlocked – if they are unlocked and baby is in distress, remove the child from the car and wait for paramedics to arrive. You can offer the child a drink. Take child to shade or AC if available. Stay on the phone with 911.

If the car is locked, this is where it can get tricky. To break a window or not to break a window. Is the child distressed? How far are the paramedics? If the paramedics are far out or the child is unresponsive, tell the 911 operator that you are going to go ahead and safely break the window.

Visit here for more scenarios involving a child locked in a hot car.
Dog  This July, we wanted to highlight pet safety. We all know that spaying and neutering can potentially save your pet's life, but what about the other things that we do not think of on a day to day basis?

•  Vaccinate your pet and look into a flea and tick preventative.
•  Make sure your pet is up-to-date on de-worming. Some worms can be passed to humans!
•  Hot pavement can burn the bottom of your furry friend's feet!
•  Never let your dog ride in an open truck bed!
•  Never allow a child to hang on or bully a dog.
•  Make sure toys are still in good condition and pets cannot choke on pieces.

The Fourth of July can be very stressful for pets. The SPCA says it's important to make sure pets have updated tags and microchips. Pets that do run away from home can be quickly reunited with their owners if the contact information is update. This can also keep pets from ending up in a local animal shelter, many of which are overcrowded.
Don't forget to check up on where your children will be spending their summers. Go to to make sure your local pools, parks and hangouts are safe for your children to visit.

We here at Family Watchdog hope you have a safe and fun start to your summer.

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