The Fourth of July is a fun day of celebrating our country for most people, but for your pets, it can be a different story.
Animals are easily frightened by the loud bangs and bright flashes from fireworks and need to be treated with special care when they’re going off. This is especially true for smaller pets.
Many animals have sharp hearing which means fireworks can actually cause them pain. Dog Trainer with Hard Knocks Rescue & Training, Nikki Hinsdale, says that being prepared and creating a safe place in advance will help keep pets calm.
“This could be a kennel or a dark room, have some music playing. There are a lot of calming products out there that can help,” said Hinsdale.
She recommends lavender spray, calming collars, and thunder shirts. These are available at pet stores like Pet Supplies Plus.
If you plan on bringing your pet with you to a parade, Hinsdale says to keep them at least three feet away from other animals and people. This will give you time to calm them if they have a negative reaction to something.
You should also think twice before letting your pet out alone. Animal shelters see an increasing number of pets come in that have simply just run away because they got scared.
“I definitely recommend taking them out to potty on leash. I’ve had so many instances where they just let them out for five minutes and a neighbor shoots off a firework , and then they’re gone and they jump,” said Hinsdale.
She also suggests making sure pets have their identification tags on them and the information is updated in case they do run away.
Make sure to clean up your fireworks display. The debris can be eaten by pets and wild animals and make them sick.