Fourth of July

With fireworks displays taking place across Chicago area, here's how to keep pets safe

Fireworks displays are scheduled to take place across the region on both Wednesday and Thursday nights

Independence Day celebrations are here, with numerous fireworks displays scheduled to take place across the Chicago area over the next two days, including Chicago's Navy Pier fireworks and the state's largest display in suburban Itasca.

While the loud and colorful displays will awe millions across the region, our furry friends may not be as willing to join in on the fun.

With increased instances of dogs and cats running away to escape the chaos during fireworks shows, the Fourth of July celebrations also often mark a busy time for animal shelters.

The Best Friends Animal Society, an animal welfare organization working to end the killing of dogs and cats in American shelters, offers the following tips to keep your pets safe for this holiday.

  • Bring all pets indoors whenever neighborhood fireworks displays are likely to occur and secure them in a quiet room. Close the windows, draw the curtains, and surround them with their favorite toys and treats. It can help to play calming music or turn on the television to drown out the frightening sounds.   
  • Always keep pets away from lit fireworks. Some pets will chase after the bright moving objects and are at risk of being burned or blinded in the process.   
  • Be sure to keep unlit fireworks out of reach, as fireworks contain substances that are toxic if ingested 
  • Ensure your pets are wearing current identification tags with your current contact information, If your pet gets spooked and runs off. Also, make sure their microchip contact information is up-to-date.  

The BFAS also advised pet owners to learn the contact information for their local emergency clinic and shelters ahead of time so that they are easy to reach in the event of an escape or medical incident.

More information on the BFAS can be found here.

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