Pets are not usually enthused about the Fourth of July fireworks. Dogs dislike the noise, and try to avoid it in may ways, hiding, or even getting out of their home and running away. More pets are listed as missing after the Fourth than any other day.
Marian Eccles of the Unleashed Foundation & Academy offers these tips to help keep pets safe during fireworks or thunderstorms.
Make sure your pets are inside and your house is secure, meaning, make sure windows are closed and even locked…cats and dogs can leap out windows when panicked.
Mind your door “knobs”, horizontal lever door “knobs” are easy for dogs and cats to open, especially when feeling panicked.
If there is a safe space, ideally a crate or room, where the animal could stay, leave a fan or something with white noise running. At the very least a radio or television with calm quiet sounds.
Thunder jackets are available at most pet stores, and is a calming wrap that applies gentle pressure to help the dog feel safe and secure. However, Eccles said you have to train your pet to use the “thunder jacket” prior to the stress event or it will not work. The animal must be able to relate the feel of the jacket to calm and comfortable times. Like a cozy blanket can be do a human.
She added that if nothing else seems to work, talk to your veterinarian about medication that could calm your pet, prior to the stress event.
If you have to walk your dog during fireworks time, it would be best to keep him on a lease, just in case. However, sometimes pets escape in spite of everything their humans do. One should make sure your dogs have their ID tags, and dog license up to date, so if they do get out they can be brought home quickly and easily.
Pet owners should keep their micro-chip information updated as well, especially if one has moved since adopting or purchasing your pet. If you know the vet who did the micro-chipping, one can call and find out the manufacturer, and then go to the website to update information on file.
Animal control at the Sheridan Police Department, the Dog and Cat Shelter, and area vets have a micro-chip scanner, and can let the pet owner know who manufactured the chip.
Wishing everyone and their pets a safe, happy and calm Fourth of July.