More pets get lost on the fourth of July than on any other day of the year. There are multiple reasons for this statistic, primarily because many animals are afraid of the loud noises associated with fireworks and the fact that many people are outside in their yards on the fourth during celebrations, and do not take the time to make sure that the yard is completely escape-proof. People coming and going into yards that are fenced may additionally forget to close gates all of the way, allowing scared animals to run away. Taking some simple precautions to prevent your pet from running away can make the holiday more enjoyable for everyone involved, including your pet.
- Make sure your dog or cat is wearing a collar and that there is a current id tag securely attached and visible at all times.
- Before any celebration begins, take a clear and current picture of your pet, just in case they were to become lost.
- Early in the morning on the fourth, exercise your dog in order to tire them out before your celebration begins. This will reduce their stress and make them less likely to attempt to escape.
- During any cookouts, make sure you ask your guests to play with your dog or cat far away from open flames.
- Dogs and cats are curious. Keep fireworks, charcoal and other hazardous materials far out of the reach of pets.
- Pets are going to beg for food from your guests. Make sure there are plenty of pet-treats on hand that are safe for people to feed them.
- During fireworks, lock your dog or cat in the house and give them a treat that will keep them busy. Our suggestion is a stuffed treat that you know they prefer
- Dogs and cats are afraid of loud noises. Play soothing and gentle music in your home to help cover the noise of the fireworks.
- Kennel your pet. Animals find small spaces comforting. Put blankets and toys into your pet’s kennel and keep them locked in during parties.
- Thundershirts keep many animals calm when loud noises happen.
Taking precautions before your celebration that will guard against your pet being lost is the best method of preventing them from running away. The noise and confusion of the fourth and the fireworks, as well as the smells of meat cooking on open flames tends to make dogs and cats both curious and afraid, both of which will make them act in ways that they typically do not. Just because they will “usually stay in the yard” does not mean that they will stay there on the fourth of July.