Experts weigh in on keeping pets safe during 4th of July celebrations


SALEM, W.Va. – Fireworks are one of the most common ways to celebrate Independence Day, but they often make pets uncomfortable. Experts at Buckeye Run Veterinary Clinic in Salem recommend leaving your pets at home when going to a fireworks show.

“Going to a crowded, noisy, unfamiliar place could cause some unneeded stress for them and also it can make them fearful. They may need to try to find a place to hide. You just don’t want to take the chance of them getting away from you,” said Buckeye Run veterinary technician Katelyn Fink.

Animals tend to be afraid of the loud and sudden noises fireworks make. If keeping them away from firework displays isn’t enough, many doctors offer other solutions.

“We do have patients here who have to be prescribed some medications. That’s always an option if they are really afraid and fearful of fireworks, thunderstorms, different things like that. But you do have to have a patient-doctor relationship to be able to get prescribed medications like those,” said Fink.

When setting off fireworks at home, pet owners are advised to always make sure their animals are indoors and away from anything that could cause injuries.

“You always have the risk of burning them or causing trauma with lit fireworks. Also, some fireworks have toxic chemicals in them, so even unlit fireworks can be hazardous to your pets,” said Fink.

In addition, experts do not recommend giving pets any type of table scraps during backyard barbecues as some foods can be toxic to animals. Others can cause upset stomachs or pancreatitis.

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