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Keep Your Pet Safe During Fireworks

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Your family pets can become frightened and frantic because of the noise and commotion during Independence Day celebrations, warn County Animal Services officials.

“The noise generated by fireworks displays and other noisemakers on the Fourth of July can frighten pets and trigger an escape or 'flight' response that can cause serious injury or even death to your pet,” said Dawn Danielson, Director of County Animal Services.

“To seek safety from loud noises, pets may dig under, climb over, or break through gates, screens, fences, windows, or doors and injure themselves or become lost,” said Danielson.

“And anytime a pet is running away, they are exposed to great danger from vehicles or other animals.”

Animal Services tips to keep your pets safe during celebrations:

  • Resist the urge to take your pet to fireworks displays.

  • Do not leave your pet in the car. With only hot air to breathe inside a car, your pet can suffer serious health effects, even death, in a few minutes.

  • Keep your pets indoors in a sheltered, quiet area. Some dogs may become destructive when frightened, so be sure to remove dangerous objects your pet may chew. Leave a television or radio playing at normal volume to keep your pet company while you’re away.

  • Never leave pets outside unattended, even in a fenced yard. In their fear, pets that normally wouldn’t leave the yard may escape and get lost.

  • If you know that your pet is seriously distressed by loud noises like thunder, consult with your veterinarian before July 4 to see if medication that relieves anxiety is appropriate.

  • Ensure your pets are easily identifiable and call the County Animal Services at (619) 236-4250 if you have found a lost pet. The Department’s shelters are located in Carlsbad, Bonita and in San Diego. Although the shelters will be closed on July 3 and 5, Animal Control officers will be on duty. Lost pets found with internal microchip identification and/or external ID tags or licenses are more readily reunited with their owners.

  • If you have lost your pet, visit the shelter closest to you on Tuesday, July 7 or check

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