The booms and bangs of the 4th of July have already begun in parts of Sammamish and Issaquah. As the community celebrates Independence Day, consider how your pet reacts to the loud noise of fireworks.
Fireworks may be illegal in the city limits of Sammamish and Issaquah, but fireworks are legal to set off in unincorporated King County from 9 a.m. to midnight on July 4. There have already been reports in the area of people in the unincorporated areas starting to celebrate early.
King County animal services reports that it takes in many pets around the Fourth of July that away after being frightened by fireworks, or just slipped out with the many holiday guests and gatherings occurring.
Here are tips for keeping your pet safe:
- Keep your pet secured indoors in the quietest room of your house while fireworks are audible. You can also try music or television as a distraction. Some pets will stay calmer when placed in a secure crate in a darkened, quiet room.
- If your pet is normally kept outside, bring them inside or put them in the garage or basement while fireworks are going off.
- Make sure your pet has at least two forms of identification. This can be a pet license and personalized tag, a license and a microchip, or all three (license, tag, and microchip). Pets with ID have a much greater chance of being returned to their owners.
- Don’t assume that your pet won’t react just because you haven’t had problems in the past. Sometimes, pets become sensitive to loud noises later in life.
- If your pet becomes lost, check in person at all local shelters, and check back often. It may take some time before spooked pets are brought to shelters.
- Use free online services like Petfinder or PetHarbor to post “lost pet” notices, and, where possible, put up “lost pet” posters in the area where your pet went missing. And send your information and pet’s photo to Sammamish-Issaquah Patch, firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Leave your pet at home if you head out to a public fireworks display.
To assist owners who have lost pets, Regional Animal Services of King County has joined with Missing Pet Partnership to train volunteers for the “Mission Reunite: Help and Hope for Lost Pets” program. Immediately after the holiday, volunteers will be deployed at the Pet Adoption Center in Kent to help owners looking for their stray pet. In addition, RASKC will keep its “Lost Pet Hotline” up to date. People who are looking for a missing pet can call 206-296-PETS (7387) and press “3” for a list of strays currently at the center.