Six Tips for a Safe 4th of July

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The Fourth of July is a time for fun with family, friends, food, and fireworks! Whether you’re out and about or staying in to celebrate America’s Independence, remember that the 4th tends to be more like a Halloween fright fest for our furry friends. In addition to just being frightened, many shelters report up to a 30% increase in lost pet intake during the holiday due to scared animals running away to escape fireworks.

Here are six tips to keep in mind this holiday weekend to keep your pets safe:

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1. Make sure your pet has a quiet, safe place to feel secure during fireworks displays.

While fireworks are a 4th of July staple, loud noises from fireworks can send even the most laid back cats and dogs into a panic and they will seek a safe hiding place.  Keep your dog or cat inside for the duration of the fireworks, and give them their favorite toy and/or treats to help distract them from the noise.  Make sure house guests are informed that your pets are not to be allowed outside, or consider shutting your pets in one quiet room and hanging a sign on the door advising people not to enter.

cat in a carrier

Photo by Maggie Osterberg / Flickr

2. Leave your pet at home, inside. 

Dogs do not enjoy fireworks displays and when frightened, can be unpredictable and/or run off.  Keep your piece of mind and save the family field trip for a quieter, more hospitable time of year.

boston terrier with toy

Photo by WeKnowMemes

3. Try some calming aids for anxious pets.  If your pet is a bundle of nerves, you can try an over-the-counter natural remedy such as Comfort Zone. Available in a diffuser or household spray and specially formulated for dogs or cats, Comfort Zone imitates naturally-occurring pheromones that may help put pets at ease.

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4. Leave extra water

Stressed animals tend to drink more so provide your pet with lots of water.

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5.  Make sure your pet can be easily identified. 

If despite your best efforts to protect your pet, they still make a mad dash for the exit, the best way to help get them back home is to ensure they have a collar with ID tag as well as an up-to-date registered microchip. If you haven’t yet, register or update your pet’s microchip for free at the Found Animals Registry.


6. Picnics and BBQs are for people, not pets. 

Let guests know not to feed your pets and keep an eye out so bones or spilled drinks are not consumed by your pets on the sly.  If your pet does get into something they shouldn’t, call the ASPCA Poison Control Center 24 hours a day, seven days a week, including holidays, at (888) 426-4435.

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Adopt & Shop, along with Found Animals, wishes everyone a very happy and safe Fourth of July!

Have you got any safety tips to add to our list? Leave them in the comments below!