Fireworks’ bright flashes and loud booms may be fun and exciting for us, but for our pets it can be terrifying. Fortunately, there are some things you can do before, during and after to make all the celebrating more survivable.
The Whatcom Humane society is bracing for the onslaught of stray animals that is typical during the 4th of July holiday. According to Executive Director Laura Clark There are ways you can avoid having your pet be one of them:
- Do not take your pet with you to view fireworks whether it be a large or small display.
- Give your pet access to a quiet place in your house. Leave a television or radio on to help mask the outside noises and provide them with their favorite toys and chewables to keep themselves occupied.
- If you know that your animal becomes seriously distressed by loud noises, consult with your veterinarian BEFORE July 4th for ways to alleviate their fear and anxiety.
- Do not leave your pet outside unattended, even in a fenced yard or in a kennel. Many dogs will dig or jump out of fenced yards or kennels in their attempt to escape the loud noises.
- Make sure your companion animals are wearing collars and identification tags at all times. This is your animals best chance at being reunited with you if lost. If your animal will not wear a collar, consider having them microchipped, a permanent form of identification
What happens if your pet goes missing? What should you do and who do you call? According to Clark, due to the large volume of stray animals the Whatcom Humane Society receives, they can’t identify lost pets via phone, email or social networking sites. So she recommends the following instead:
- Visit the Whatcom Humane Society (or your local animal shelter) in person and look for your pet. Bring a current photo of your companion animal with you.
- Post “lost pet” ads on craigslist.org and elsewhere. Post in both the “lost and found” and “pets” sections.
- Include a photo of your animal in the online post and your contact information.
- Post information and photos of your lost pet on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social networking profiles.
- Regularly check for postings from people who have found or seen lost pets.
- Post fliers with your animal’s photo, description and your contact information throughout your neighborhood, at local veterinary clinics, pet supply stores and other areas and businesses near your home. Inform your mail carrier, garbage collectors, newspaper carriers and neighborhood children that your pet is missing.
- Enlist the aid of neighbors, family and friends. Search local parks, school yards, fields and playgrounds and vacant lots for your dog. Ask neighbors to search basements, attics, garages, sheds and other areas for your cat or small animals. If you live in an apartment, check stairwells, hallways, laundry facilities and any vacant apartments.
- If you have recently moved, conduct a search in your old neighborhood.
- Don’t give up hope! It’s not uncommon for people to be reunited with lost pets weeks or even months after they initially go missing.
- Be sure to notify the Whatcom Humane Society and the other organizations you have contacted once you have found your companion animal.