Utah Humane Society offers tips for keeping pets safe during holiday fireworks

File photo: Thomas Maresca/UPI

UTAH, June 30, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — The Utah Humane Society is offering tips to keep pets safe during the upcoming holidays of July 4 and 24.

“More pets go missing during these holidays due to fearful reactions from the loud noises, the smell of sulfur, and bright lights from fireworks,” a statement from the Humane Society says.

“The best tip is to prevent your pet from getting lost in the first place by keeping them inside. Do not take your pet with you to watch fireworks and do not leave them unattended outside during parties or firework activity.”

The Utah Humane Society shares the following safety concerns and tips with pet owners during these holiday celebrations:

  • Keep your pets on their normal diet. Make sure your pets do not consume the following items during summer parties: grapes, raisins, garlic, onions, guacamole, chicken wings, cooked bones, chocolate, Xylitol (artificial sweetener common in sugar-free foods), alcohol, sunscreen, insect repellent, citronella or fireworks. Ask your guests not to feed your pet any food other than their pre approved treats.

  • Keep pets in a safe area during holiday parties. Prevent your pet from escaping the house or yard when guests come and go. Prevent your cat or dog from falling out of open windows and do not leave them on balconies or high patios unobserved.

  • Make sure your pets have current identification. It is highly recommended that your pet is microchipped in addition to wearing an ID collar. Be sure to keep your contact information updated.

  • Keep your pet safely away from firework activity. For pets usually kept outdoors, bring them inside during firework activity. Try to feed and walk your dog before the fireworks begin.

  • Prepare the house. Keep some lights on to calm your pet. Dampen the noise by closing doors, windows, curtains and keeping the TV or calm music playing.

  • Prepare an escape-proof safe room. Select a suitable inner room or crate to contain your pet for the duration of the fireworks to prevent them from running about the house and causing injury to themselves or others. Make the room comfortable by placing the animal’s favorite bedding, toys and treats to keep them amused and distracted. If the pet is frightened, their automatic response will be to run and hide somewhere in the room; this is their method of coping. Allow them to hide and do not try to coax them out. Be sure to leave sufficient food and water.

  • Do a follow-up assessment. Your pet may remain anxious even after firework activity ends. If your pet is stressed, keep them inside overnight. Check the yard to collect fireworks and party items before letting your pets back outside.

  • Get additional help if needed. If your pet suffers from a fear of fireworks, an anxiety vest may work in some cases—if you don’t have one, try a snug-fitting T-shirt. If you and your veterinarian decide that anti-anxiety medication is needed, give a practice dose of the medication before firework activity to see how your pet responds. Never share the medication with another pet or give more than the recommended amount.


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