More pets are lost during the week of 4th of July than any other time of the year. The Animal Foundation took in 577 lost and frightened animals last year from July 1st to July 10th. Of those, only 124 were returned to their owners!
Here are some ways to make the holiday safer for your pet.
Make sure your pet has identification
If your pet does become lost, a collar, tag, and microchip will identify you as the owner. This can lead to a much faster reunion.
Make sure the information on the tag and microchip is up to date. All too often, lost pets come to The Animal Foundation with microchips with outdated information. This prevents them from getting in touch with you.
Don’t have time to buy a tag or update the one you already have? Want extra identification in case your pet’s tags fall off? Use a Sharpie to write your contact number directly on your dog's collar.
Create a comfort zone
The most important thing you can do as a dog owner is to provide your pet with a safe space at home. Create an escape-proof location and make it a calm environment. A crate is best, but a small area like the garage, a bathroom, or closet can also work as long as there aren’t a lot of windows or sliding glass doors. Shut the windows, lower the blinds, provide a comfy bed or protective box for them to relax in, give them toys to distract them, and turn on the radio or television to compete with outside sounds. Music works to drown out the sound of the fireworks, but so can industrial-type fans. And of course, keep them indoors at all times!
Tire them out
Give your pets plenty of exercise before the fireworks begin. Walking your dog or having an extended play session with your cat can lower their general anxiety levels.
Do NOT bring pets to fireworks displays
Pets belong inside the comfort of their home during Fourth of July weekend as fireworks can cause animals to have increased anxiety and a sense of extreme uncertainty. This could cause them to seek shelter away from the safety of their owners. Even if your pet is normally good around strangers, take into consideration the heightened level of stress they will be experiencing and do not bring them to a 4th of July party.
Do NOT set off fireworks around pets.
Using fireworks around animals not only runs the risk of potential injury but it also increases the likelihood of your pet running away in a desperate attempt to feel safe.
Ask your vet
For extra anxious dogs, you can visit your veterinarian to get some anti-anxiety medication.
If your pet is lost
If your pet does become lost, it is highly possible that they will end up at The Animal Foundation. Lost and stray pets picked up by City of Las Vegas, City of North Las Vegas, and Clark County Animal Control are brought to The Animal Foundation.
If your best friend is missing, search The Animal Foundation’s lost and found page. It’s updated regularly. If you see your pet online, come down to The Animal Foundation's Lost and Found department between 11am - 7pm, Tuesday - Sunday, located at 655 North Mojave Road.
Your pet is likely hiding somewhere in your neighborhood! Most lost dogs are found within a two-mile circle of their home.
If you find a lost pet, try to find the owner.
Most pets are found in the neighborhoods they live in, so social media platforms such as Nextdoor and Facebook are all extremely effective at reuniting pets with their owners. If you find a pet, ask your neighbors if they recognize them and post flyers throughout the community.
If the animal appears sick, injured or dangerous, please contact your local animal control agency.
If you can’t care for the animal or identify an owner, email firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment to bring the animal into the shelter.
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