In the news:
Booming fireworks can send more dogs to shelters
Tips on keeping pets safe and calm during Fourth of July fireworks and other celebrations. Plus, what to do if your pet is lost or if you find a pet.
The Associated Press
Lost and found tips for pet owners
MANY PETS go astray during the Fourth of July holiday. Some bolt at the sound of fireworks; others slip out open doors or gates amid the holiday chaos. Here are a few tips for finding your pet if it should become lost:
Be prepared. Make sure your pet is wearing an up-to-date ID tag and has an ID microchip implanted.
Call in a lost report to local shelters. Also ask if they've received any found reports. Be careful how you interpret found reports; people may not describe your pet the way you do.
Get out and talk to people. Ask everyone you come across if he has seen your pet.
Post signs. Make eye-catching posters. Include a recent picture, contact information and where the pet was last seen. (Remember to take down signs when the pet is found.)
Tap into the Internet. Use neighborhood listservs and email contacts to let others know your pet is missing.
Return to owner. If you find a lost dog, remember that someone is counting on you. If there are no tags, call a shelter. Ask about lost reports, and submit a found report. The shelter or a vet's office can check for an ID microchip.
THE SEATTLE ANIMAL SHELTER will be closed on July 4. It will reopen on July 5. If you find a lost pet on the holiday, try to care for it until the shelter opens. Also, if there is a life-threatening situation involving both a human and animal, call 911.
FOR INFORMATION ON SEATTLE AREA ANIMAL EMERGENCY-CARE FACILITIES that will be open on the holiday and for more tips, go to Seattle Animal Shelter's website at http://thescoop.seattle.gov/2012/06/28/seattle-animal-shelter-closes-for-july-fourth-holiday-3/.
FOR A LIST OF SHELTERS AND ANIMAL RESCUE ORGANIZATIONS, go to Seattle Humane Society's website at http://www.seattlehumane.org/services/emergencies/lost-animal or http://www.seattlehumane.org/services/emergencies/found-animal.
The Associated Press and Seattle Times staff
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LOS ANGELES — The busiest day of the summer at most animal shelters around the country is July 5.
Shelters are "absolutely chock full of terrified dogs on the day after the Fourth of July," said Dr. Kate F. Hurley, director of the Koret Shelter Medicine Program at the University of California at Davis Center for Companion Animal Health.
When she was an animal control officer, she saw dogs "jump through plate glass windows, they were so freaked out."
"Cats don't seem to make an issue of fireworks," Hurley added.
Loud, crowded public fireworks displays are hazardous for pets, so the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals advises pet owners to stay home.
No matter how quiet and escape-proof you try to make your home, accidents happen and dogs bolt, so the single best thing you can do for your dog is have a chip implanted and make sure it's wearing an ID tag on its collar, said Brenda Barnette, general manager of the Los Angeles Department of Animal Services.
There are a lot of other things owners can do to help their dogs get through the terror:
• Keep pets indoors: If you are having company, keep pets in a room that is off-limits to guests. Make sure there is plenty of food and water.
• Keep it calm: Surround dogs with favorite toys and familiar objects. Play soothing music and close doors to keep it quiet.
• Keep a barrier: Even if dogs don't seem upset by the noise, getting too close to fireworks can cause burns and eating them can be toxic.