Independence Day is a stressful time for pets

Local shelters say runaways peak on July 4th
Posted at 6:20 AM, Jul 03, 2015
and last updated 2017-06-29 14:40:27-04

While Independence Day is an exciting time for Americans, it's often a distressing time for many pets.

Many in the animal-care industry cite the 4th of July as a time when many pets run away from home, often frightened by loud fireworks displays.

Dogs and cats have especially sensitive ears, and those loud booms often lead to many pets running off and getting lost. It's often a very busy time of year at Tampa Bay-area animal shelters for that same reason.

The Humane Society of Tampa Bay has some tips for pet-owners this holiday weekend:

  • Keep all pets confined indoors on July 3rd and 4th, when people are often setting off fireworks. Even if those pets usually spend their time outdoors.
  • Leave on a radio or TV for your pet at a normal volume to dampen those jarring noises.
  • Never leave your pet in a parked car, even at night, during a fireworks display. Even when the temperature outside is a balmy 72 degrees, the temperature inside your car can rocket to a fatal 116 degrees in less than an hour’s time, even with the windows cracked open.
  • If you know your pet is stressed out by loud noises, you can talk to your veterinarian about medications and techniques to help alleviate your pet's fear and anxiety.
  • Invest in a "Thundershirt" which is available for purchase at the shelter on Friday, July 3 at noon.
  • Make sure your pet is wearing a collar and ID tag with current contact information in case your pet does run off.
  • Microchip your pet