For humans, the Fourth of July is marked by fireworks, barbecues, and celebration with family and friends. For pets, however, it is a day of mysterious explosive noises, peculiar smells, and a lot of unfamiliar and territorially intrusive people.
As they don’t fully understand the day’s patriotic significance, the holiday can be a traumatizing experience for animals. Both cats and dogs have an acute sense of hearing, so the sudden noise of firework blasts alarm and confuse them. Sometimes, they might run around and hide from the clamor. Other times, they run away.
In fact, animal shelters claim the week of July 4 is often the busiest of the year because they must provide for all of the pets that run off in fright during the celebrations. Caretakers should take special care to make sure their pets don’t escape in holiday panic.
One way to keep your companion animals feeling safe is to give them a peaceful place to retreat to as the bombs are bursting in air. If you are having guests over, close your companion animal in a quiet room. It is good to give then some attention, but it is also important to let them do their own thing. If an animal is hiding, you should let him stay wherever he feels safe. Turning on the TV or a loud fan may also distract them from the patriotic partying.
Keeping your companion animal inside and somewhere where it can’t escape is the best way to keep him from running away, but it is still a good option to consider microchipping him or writing your phone number on his collar as a precaution if it ever does get loose.
There’s little sign of the fireworks fading from holiday tradition soon, but it’s still possible to have a happy day with your companion animals. If they feel up to it, you can dress them in patriotic hats and bandannas.