We love to include our pets in our celebrations, but this is one time they might be better off at home. Loud, noisy fireworks are not fun for your furry friend. Add the summer heat and the dangers in some of the holiday foods, and including your pet might not be the best choice.
Next week we Americans will celebrate one of my favorite holidays – the Fourth of July. I really enjoy all the food, and the patriotic music, and the fireworks!
Unfortunately, most pets do not enjoy the holiday. The noise and commotion can frighten them, so much so that animal shelters all over the country expect to receive what they call “July 4th dogs” – animals who ran off in a panic during a fireworks display and are found by caring strangers or rescued by animal control officers. And it’s the lucky ones who make it to the safety of an animal shelter. Some are not so fortunate and end up lost, or hit by cars when the terrified pets race into the street.
An animal’s ears are much more sensitive than ours; the exploding fireworks that just sound loud to us can be painful for them, even frightening. A pet that is normally calm in most situations can be panicked by the intense noise.
AdoptAPet.com has some suggestions for keeping your pet safe on this uniquely American holiday. Start ahead of time by making sure your furry friend has an ID tag and also a microchip with your current contact information, and maybe an emergency contact if you cannot be reached.
Before the fireworks begin, bring your pet indoors, in a quiet place that will make your pet feel safe. Close windows and doors to muffle the noise and ensure it cannot push its way through the screen. Put on some relaxing music or turn on the TV to help cover the noise of any fireworks. If possible, do not leave a pet outdoors, even in a fenced area, during the fireworks display.
And if you find an animal running loose, take it to your local shelter. That’s the most likely place for an owner to look for a lost pet, and the best chance for the animal to find its way home.
This year, make it part of your holiday tradition to take a few precautions that could keep your best friend safe and free to enjoy all the other wonderful days of the year, when you’re speaking of pets.