It’s that time of year when fireworks are purchased, flags are hoisted and barbecues begin. The Fourth of July is one of the most popular American holidays, so it’s a given that millions across the nation will be celebrating to their heart’s content. Although most will be celebrating outside, it’s important to care for that special, furry member of your family.
Many cats and dogs will be relaxing indoors while their owners will be outdoors. One thing that many pet owners overlook, however, is the fear that these lovable animals experience with the loud blasts and pops of fireworks. One very unfortunate result of this fear is cats and dogs running from home. Let’s go over a few tips of what you can do to prevent this from happening.
What to Consider
Loud noises of all types can cause fear in your pets. Fireworks, thunder, shouting, etc. can all cause them to be fearful of their surroundings. However, firework blasts are unique in that they tend to be louder and continuous over a period of time. Not only that, but if celebrations are occurring both indoors and outdoors, your pet may make an attempt to flee your home in an effort to find safety. In more serious cases, these loud noises can cause a level of fear so high that he/she can be harmed in their attempt to find safety or even suffer anxiety.
What are some precautions you can take to prevent your pet from escaping? And what can you do to help locate him/her if they do run off? Consider the following:
- If you’re hosting a celebration, explore your property to spot any openings in fences and repair them in case your pet manages to escape outside.
- Ensure that their tags contain all relevant and updated info, including your name, your home address and phone number, and the phone number of their veterinarian.
- Keep all dogs and cats indoors in a small room with food and water until the celebrations outside have completely died down. Leaving a television or radio playing may help minimize the sound of fireworks.
- Make sure your guests are aware that there are pets staying inside that should not be disturbed or allowed to go outside. Tape up notices on your front and backdoors asking guests not to leave them open.
- Keeping rabies vaccines current is an owner’s legal obligation for all cats and dogs. Also ensure that your pets are microchipped. Microchips can assist in reuniting pets with their owners as long as all information is current and correct. We offer Home Again microchipping for our furry patients to more easily facilitate them being reunited with their families.
- If your pet is reacting negatively to the loud noises of firework-popping, don’t punish them as this can increase their fear response. Remember, they can’t help feeling this way and it’s very important for you to react appropriately, which sometimes may be to not react at all as long as they are safe and not attempting to self-harm.
- The doctors at Valley Animal Hospital are very knowledgeable and experienced in handling behavior issues of all types, including fear and anxiety. There are supplements and medications that work well to decrease your pet’s negative responses due to fireworks and even thunderstorms. Call us to discuss how we can help make this Fourth of July a pleasant celebration for everyone involved.
- If you’re planning on leaving town for the Fourth of July holiday, make sure your pets are being directly supervised by a qualified 24-hour kennel facility or pet sitter.
Visit Us Today
If your furry loved one is in need of any veterinary attention, Valley Animal Hospital will do its best to treat him/her. We consider all pets to be family and want nothing more than for your dog, cat or other loved one to be in great health. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.