By Patricia Hall, Fairfax Family Fun
It’s almost time for the Fourth of July! That means food, family and friends, and fireworks! As far as your pets are concerned, they probably love food and like (or at least tolerate!) your friends and family, but when it comes to fireworks, most pets are NOT fans. Every year around this time plenty of articles with Fourth of July pet safety tips spring up, and with good reason, too: According to Petfinder, citing HomeAgain, more pets get lost on the fourth of July than any other day of the year.
The likely main reason is because of the fear the animals feel from the noise of the fireworks. But other reasons — such as more people coming in and out of a home if someone is hosting a party — contribute to this as well. Most pet owners already know the Independence Day holiday is a dangerous time for animals, especially cats and dogs. But the year 2020 may prove more worrisome for a couple of reasons:
- With just about all large public fireworks displays cancelled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, more people will be having their own fireworks shows at home. CNBC reports that firework sellers say they are seeing huge gains in sales, with some seeing jumps of 200% to 300%. This means that some neighborhoods that normally may have been quieter will have more fireworks explosions this year.
- With more people shooting fireworks at home, the celebrations may continue for days. Some of these people may not be accustomed to handling fireworks — and may pose potentially dangerous situations.
While there’s little you can do to stop the scary noises of fireworks, with some preparation before the celebrations and carefulness during the holiday, you can take steps to keep your pet from going missing or being terrified at home. This infographic from Petfinder has some good tips you also can share with kids and guests to your home
Also consider these other useful Fourth of July pet safety tips:
- Banfield Pet Hospital reminds you that food is an issue, as the smell of food on the grill may attract them and this could result in burns. The site also has suggestions on foods to avoid and how to properly dispose of food items to avoid health hazards to pets.
- The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals notes that many common household items can be dangerous for dogs and other pets. Sunscreen, insect repellent, citronella candles can be very hazardous to animals.
- It’s not over after it’s over! The American Veterinary Medical Association also recommends checking your yard after holiday celebrations to check for firework debris that your pets may ingest.