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Help keep pets safe this 4th of July

11:59 AM, Jun 28, 2012   |    comments
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St. Louis (KSDK) -- The Humane Society of Missouri wants the Fourth to be fun for humans and safe for pets.

During high temperatures, it is critically important that people be aware of their pets.  Never leave pets unattended in a parked car. When the outside temperature is above 70 degrees, the heat inside a car can climb to more than 100 degrees in only minutes. The consequences are deadly.  Your pet can suffer dehydration, heat stroke or death. To report an animal in heat-related jeopardy, call the Humane Society of Missouri ANIMAL ABUSE HOTLINE (314) 647-4400.

Fireworks can scare animals and cause even obedient pets to misbehave. A startled pet may hide or try to escape by digging under, chewing through or climbing over fences.

The Humane Society offers this tips to help keep your pet happy this 4th of July:

Ideally, don't take pets to festivities. Excitement and noise could cause them to become nervous and run away.
Give them a quiet, cool place inside. Sounds will be less intense and it protects them from stray fireworks or from those who seek to harm pets with fireworks.
Close windows and turn on a radio or TV to mask sounds.
Give your pet his favorite toys and bed, and make sure he has access to water.
If you can't avoid taking your dog to the festivities, keep him on a short, non-retractable leash. Have a back-up plan in case your dog gets overwhelmed.
Pets should wear ID tags at all times. Pet owners should consider microchipping as a permanent way to ID pets and help ensure a safe return if lost. The Humane Society of Missouri offers microchipping at all locations.
Keep your veterinarian's phone number handy in case of emergencies.

Avoid:
Leaving your pet in a yard unattended. A stray bottle rocket zipping through your yard could frighten or injure your dog.
Confining a fearful dog on a chain or in a small area. This could increase panic.
Punishing your pet for his behavior related to the loud noises. It will make him more afraid.

Visit hsmo.org for more pet care and pet adoption information.

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