While Fourth of July fireworks shows are great fun for adults and children, they can be a nightmare for your pet and the County of Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control.
In fact, the fifth of July quickly has become Animal Care's busiest day of the year.
“We see an increase in strays running on our local freeways, pets found far from home and injured animals,” said Marcia Mayeda, DACC director.
Dogs and cats can become startled and disoriented by the sound of fireworks, causing them to run away from the noise to seek protection.
The DACC asks that pet owners take extra precautions in order to protect their pets during Fourth of July celebrations. To ensure the safety of your pets, here are a few tips:
- Make sure your pet’s license is current and your pet is wearing identification tags, including name and telephone number of owner, that are securely affixed to the collar.
- Keep your pets indoors in a cool, comfortable place with some “white noise” distraction such as a radio or television.
- Do not keep your pets in the backyard or tied up. Dogs, in particular, may panic and injure themselves on a rope or chain.
- Double check yard gates to make sure that your pet cannot escape.
- Do not take your pets to community fireworks events. Most events do not allow pets. The noise and other activities at these events can easily surprise and frighten your pet.
- If you are leaving town for the weekend and cannot take your pets with you, make sure you leave them with someone who will be cautious and responsible during the Fourth of July celebrations.
Anyone who loses an animal in the city of Long Beach, Los Alamitos, Seal Beach, Signal Hill or Cerritos and Artesia should visit Long Beach Animal Care Services at petharbor.com or the city's pet lost and found online at longbeach.gov/acs.
If you do not see your lost pet online, you can visit the local shelter in person on Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., or Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The shelter will be closed July 4, but Animal Control officers will be responding that day to emergency calls, such as for stray and injured animals and animals that have bitten or scratched others.
Animals with identification will be held at the Village for 14 days, pending being claimed by their owner. Animals without identification will be held for a minimum of six days before being evaluated for adoption.
The shelter is located at 7700 E. Spring St., between Studebaker Road and the San Gabriel River (605) Freeway.
For further information regarding Animal Care Services and responsible pet ownership, visit longbeach.gov/acs or call (562) 570-7387.
The DACC’s animal care centers will be closed July 4 but will resume normal business hours on July 5. If you witness animal cruelty or an animal in distress, please call (562) 940-6898 or call 911.
The closest DACC centers are in Downey at 11258 Garfield Ave., and in Gardena at 216 W. Victoria St. For more information, you can visit the website at animalcare.lacounty.gov, or go on Facebook at facebook.com/CountyofLosAngelesAnimalCare, or Twitter @LACoAnimalCare.