Keep pets safe during noisy holiday

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Drought and fireworks don’t mix, but chances are there will be plenty of noise this Independence Day. While most people enjoy holiday celebrations, your furry friend might not be so excited about bombs bursting in air.

Noise anxiety causes many pets to do whatever they can to get away – hiding for cover or even jumping through screened doors and windows.

Shelter workers and veterinarians agree that when it comes to pets, playing it safe is the best bet. Follow these simple tips to make the holiday a pleasant one for you and your best friend:

• Keep animals away from fireworks. Leave them at home if you’re headed to a fireworks display.

•Stay indoors with your pet if you can, but if you plan to leave, make a safe place available for your animal, such as an open closet or crate. Leave the television or music on to diffuse outside noise. “White noise” like fans or soothing sounds such as classical music helps to drown out startling noises.

• Offer a toy or treat to keep your pet occupied.

• Make sure your pet is wearing a collar with up-to-date information on his or her tags. Microchip your pet.

• Consider purchasing a Thundershirt for your pet. The shirt, which easily wraps over most dogs, is designed to provide a calming effect when a canine experiences fear or separation anxiety.

Many festive foods and products also can be potentially hazardous to your four-legged friend. Keep your pets in mind when planning your party:

•Never leave alcoholic drinks unattended where pets can reach them, along with citronella candles, insect coils and oil products.

•Do not apply any sunscreen or insect repellent to your pet that is not labeled specifically for pets. The misuse of insect repellent that contains DEET can lead to neurological problems.

•Keep your pet on a normal diet. Any changes in your pet’s diet, even for one meal, can result in indigestion or diarrhea.

•Do not put glow jewelry on your pets, or allow them to play with it. While the ingredients in these products are not highly toxic, ingesting them can cause gastrointestinal irritation or blockage.