Dogs may be people’s best friends, but the reverse isn’t always true. For instance, what best friend would bring her canine buddy to a parade on a scorching hot summer day? What human pal would force his dog to pick her way through throngs of people at a shad or cranberry festival?
And what kind of person would think for a moment that the family dog would like nothing more than accompanying his humans to the July 4 fireworks show? Ai-yi-yi!
Such people should know these facts:
* Many animals are extremely frightened and stressed at the sight and sound of fireworks
* Animal control officers see a 30-60% increase in lost pets each year between July 4-6.
* July 5 is one of the busiest days of the year for animal shelters.
"Independence Day" ought to be just that for pets too: a day when they can do what they might wish – and that does not include enduring fireworks.
An excellent flyer (produced by the animal control officer in Lawrence Township, NJ, for the health dept. there) shares the facts above as well as the following tips for easing pets’ 4th of July stress. The first one is most important:
1 – Do not take your pets to fireworks displays.
2 – Designate a “safe space” inside for your pets to retreat to during the July 4 festivities. Keep
windows and doors shut to prevent escape attempts and cut down on anxiety-causing noise.
Keep curtains shut to block out bright lights.
3 – Play calm music at low volume to block out some of the outside noise.
4 -- Distract your pets from the fireworks chaos with playtime, a favorite toy and treats.
5 – Double check to make sure your pets are wearing their collars with license and/or ID tags
with current information. Have your pets microchipped.
It should be noted – and applauded too – that only a few years ago, Lawrence residents could, and
Here’s very recent news about “the first drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration for canine noise aversion (a term encompassing mild discomfort to phobia).” It’s now available to care for animals who find noisy events like fireworks and thunder storms disturbing to the point of panic and flight:
Wishes for a happy, and safe for all, 4th of July!