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How to protect your pets when fireworks are set off this Fourth of July weekend

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Posted at 5:10 PM, Jun 30, 2021

(LEX 18) — Those Fourth of July fireworks are the highlight of the year for some of us, but our furry friends may not feel the same way.

Loud noises, like fireworks, can be stressful for animals. That sudden pop of color in the sky can send them running.

"The Fourth of July is the number one time of year for animals to run away," said Dr. Heidi Goggin with Buffalo Trace Veterinary Services. "If you're able to prepare in advance, try to do some desensitization training with your animals. If you have any loud noises, give them treats and lots of praise during that time."

But with Independence Day only four days away, there may not be enough time to fully desensitize them to the noise. In that case, Dr. Goggin says bring them inside and have a safe space ready for them."

John Nisbet already has for his dog, McKenna.

"Usually, I get some of her stuffed animals that she likes, you know, keep it close," said Nisbet. "Sometimes, I put her in her crate. She feels safe there. So if she seems skittish, that's what I'll do, but I think she'll be alright."

"You can actually play classical music, too, which can be a natural calming for them," said Dr. Goggin. "Thunder shirts can be really helpful for some animals."

You can also talk to your veterinarian about medications and other techniques that might help with your pet's fear and anxiety.