FLORENCE, SC (WBTW) Independence Day can be a scary day for pet owners, according to officials at the Florence Area Humane Society. Although many people enjoy celebrating and popping fireworks, it can be a frightening time for our furry friends.
The days after July 4th are busy at shelters with more animals coming in and concerned pet owners asking if their animals are there, said Jayne Boswell, Florence Area Humane Society.
“The high number of people calling that their pet is lost, and that they haven’t been able to find it. They want to put up posters, and they want to contact the shelters,” she added.
According to Florence Veterinarian, Nikki Milligan, pets can run off when they are scared and end up miles away from their homes.
“It’s normal for them to be afraid of things that are loud, so it takes some training and to do that you need to understand your dog’s walk, his or her mannerisms, and pick up on that to know when they’re stressed,” Milligan said.
When owners notice their pet is stressed, it’s important to take the correct steps afterwards.
“Stay Calm. Use their favorite toys and keep them indoors for sure. Letting them out is how animals get lost. Keep them with you. You are their person and staying near you will calm them,” Milligan added.
Owners, who struggle with keeping their pet calm, can visit their vet for calming medication or get them a ThunderShirt. Milligan said the ThunderShirt can help calm their anxiety.
Boswell recommends that people take a few extra steps to protect pets the days before festivities begin.
- Make sure I.D. tags are properly placed
- Update contact information
- Update your microchip registrations and pet license information
- Get calming medication days before, if needed
“They’re not used to that because you only see it occur certain times of the year. Fourth of July is the biggest of the holidays, and it’s scary for them. A lot of them are afraid of just thunderstorms, so you can imagine that’s intensified with fireworks,” Boswell said.
If your pet gets lost on Independence Day, Boswell suggests owners contact local shelters and veterinarian offices to see if they are there.