As residents begin planning their Fourth of July celebrations, Blue Mountain Humane Society is putting out a reminder asking that animals be kept in mind, as there is often an increase of lost pets following the Fourth of July. Festivities for the holiday often include fireworks and other commotion, which can be stressful to pets and result in them getting lost. For the safety and protection of pets, Blue Mountain Humane Society joins the Humane Society of the United States in recommending the following:
- Leave pets at home and inside. Fireworks can be terrifying to pets, even pets who are accustomed to being around crowds and commotion. Avoid taking your pets to barbecues or other outdoor festivities, they can quickly become disoriented and lost from all the new sensations and noises.
- Create a home sanctuary. Leave your pet in an area of your home where they are safe, comfortable and sheltered from any outside noise and lights. An interior room without immediate access to the outside is preferred. Lessen the visual stimulation in your pet’s space by lowering the blinds/closing the curtains or placing a blanket over a crate or kennel. Playing a radio with relaxing music may help mask the sound of fireworks.
- Pet-proof your home. When scared, some animals may become destructive so be sure to remove anything from reach that can become damaged or may harm the pet if chewed or eaten. If having a party at your house, lock your pet in a room with no access by guests. This prevents your pet from getting frightened and slipping out the door as guests go in and out.
- Identification is essential. Pets may panic, escape and become lost. Updated identification is critical to ensuring lost pets are reunited with their families. Ideal identification is both a tag and microchip (make sure your chip is registered and up to date on a site such as petmicrochiplookup.org).
- Consult a veterinarian for pets with anxiety. Consult your veterinarian before the Fourth of July to seek out remedies to lower your pet’s stress level if this is a known issue. There are a variety of calming methods such as pet specific scents and music, thunderjackets/anxiety wraps, or progressive sound training.
“The 5th of July is one of the busiest days of the year for lost and found animals at Blue Mountain Humane Society. During the celebrations and fireworks many pets become scared and run away from home,” said Sara Archer, executive director. “Microchips are one of the best steps pet owners can take to ensure they can be reunited with their lost pets. We encourage people to update their pet’s identification information before the holiday.”
BMHS will be closed to visitors on July 4th with staff on-site to care for the shelter animals, including those animals who are lost over the holiday. BMHS reopens to visitors on Friday at noon. If a stray animal is found during the Fourth of July celebrations when the shelter is closed, please call 527-1960.