Opinion

Guest editorial: A caution about pets and fireworks

Animal shelters will be packed for a couple of weeks around the Fourth of July with lost and panic-stricken dogs and cats. Despite warnings by veterinarians and animal control officers, many pet owners fail to take precautions in shielding their dogs and cats against fireworks.

The best place for your dog or cat over the Fourth of July weekend is in your laundry room, den or garage, away from where the fireworks are set off. Extra precautions are needed because the loud noises and bright explosions of fireworks can be terrifying to pets. Sometimes playing soft music will muffle the sound of fireworks. Fireworks have a shocking effect on dogs and cats because their sense of hearing is much keener. Dogs sometimes chew restraining ropes or jump fences in trying to escape. Some frightened animals when fleeing their homes are struck by automobiles. Older dogs and cats can die of a heart attack.

Dogs and cats should always wear a license and I.D. tags, as they may lead to the pet being reunited with its owners. Otherwise your cherished pet may face death at an overcrowded shelter. Very few pets are provided with a license or I.D. tag because pet owners never anticipate a pet running away and getting lost. Some cherished pets are lost forever during this holiday, others are found sometimes days or weeks later. To cope with the noise, may owners buy tranquilizers from veterinarians for their pets. Many pets run away when there is an electrical storm and the same precautions should be taken.

For more information, call P.A.W.S. at (360) 373-7043.

B.J. Alcorn

President

P.A.W.S. Of Bremerton

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