4th of July pet safety 101

A chihuahua

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The 4th of July is right around the corner and with it so near, Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control is reminding people to keep their four-legged friends safe during that time.

“Any kind of animal that you have, they can easily get away from you out of your sight if they get scared and they don’t really know what’s happening so they might just take off,” said Holly Pasquinelli, community relations education specialist for Animal Care and Control.

Pasquinelli said they’re busy this time of year.

“Every year we see a spike in runaway animals,” she said. “People contacting us. People finding lost pets right after the Fourth of July or around the weekend celebrations.”

It can be a nerve-wracking time for some pets.

“Fourth of July celebrations can be really stressful on animals,” she explained. “The loud booms of fireworks can scare them, overwhelm them, and kind of disorient them and they’re more likely to run away during that time.”

Pasquinelli said if you know your pet will be uncomfortable around fireworks to leave them at home. You can even leave on a T.V. or air conditioner on to drown out some of the noise from fireworks.

“Never leave your animal in the car,” she added. “It’s going to be warm and it can overheat very quickly inside of a car, even if you have your windows cracked.”

She said its also advised to keep food out of their reach, because most 4th of July food is unhealthy for animals.

It’s important to mark your pet by either putting an identification tag on their collar or micro-chipping them. If they get lost, this helps to return the pet to its owner quickly.

“It only takes one time for your pet to run away and we’re going to make sure they are safe,” Pasquinelli concluded.

Anyone who loses or finds a pet this holiday weekend is asked to contact Animal Care and Control.