MASON, Mich. — The Fourth of July is the most common day for your furry friends to escape in Ingham County. The cook outs and fireworks may seem fun to us, but they can stress out our pets, especially dogs.
"Fireworks are very scary, you know cause a lot of anxiety for dogs, and they try to escape that. And one way they do that is by running away, if they're given the opportunity. So we get a lot of strays," said Ingham County Animal Control Community Outreach Manager Hannah Page.
Dogs try and escape the scary noises by leaving the property, so it is encouraged that they are kept in a safe, contained space.
"You have a guest over, and they forget to latch the gate or forget to latch the door. The dog sees it as an opportunity to you know escape the scary noises, well they think they're escaping the scary noises. But yep, you know it happens especially with a lot of visitors," said Page.
However, fireworks and loud noises are not the only things that could put your pets at risk.
"Making sure dogs stay away from fireworks if you're setting off fireworks, charcoal if you're grilling, glow sticks you know kids with glow sticks, sparkles, so all potentially dangerous things for dogs. We always recommend keeping them in a safe contained area," said Page.
Luckily, there's ways to keep your dog from gaining extra independence on the street. Page has a list of things you can do to help keep your furry friends at ease during all of the commotion.
"First, please resist the urge to take your dog with you to go see the fireworks. They have a much better time if they stay home in their environment where it's safe. Put on some music for them, give them something to do like a puzzle toy or a Kong with peanut butter, even taking a towel and like rolling it up making a toy for them something to distract them to get their mind thinking about that instead of the fireworks," Page said.
For dogs that have separation anxiety, Page recommends speaking to your veterinarian and getting a prescription of Trazdone for events like the Fourth of July and Memorial Day.
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