Erath County Humane Society reminds pet owners of fireworks, heat safety

E-T staff report

The Erath County Humane Society reminds individuals during this time of year to be courteous as fireworks can be upsetting for pets.

According to information provided by the agency, one in five dogs go missing after being scared by fireworks. More dogs go missing on the Fourth the July than any other day of the year due to the loud noises from fireworks.

To help keep your pet at ease, the following is recommended:

• Exercise during the day. Ensure your dogs get plenty of exercise during the day to tire them out.

• Stay home. Don't bring them to events where fireworks will be set off.

• Make them feel safe. Provide a safe place at home with music or the television playing.

• Distraction. Entertain them with their favorite toys and treats.

• Act normal. Don't acknowledge the fireworks, as your dog may be looking to you on how to react.

• Name tags. Make sure your dog is wearing their collar with ID tags, or, even better, get your dog microchipped.

Heatstroke in pets can have a quick onset and can kill them. Here are several signs to be aware of.

In addition to fireworks safety, the Erath County Human Society released information for pet owners to take into consideration during extreme summer heat.

Even when pet owners think the temperature feels fine, fur babies may feel differently. Animals don't sweat like humans, so they heat up a lot quicker. Their primary source of cooling down is through panting, which is inefficient. They also cool down through their paws, so be aware of this when putting booties on your pets.

The No. 1 cause of heatstroke in dogs is leaving them in a vehicle. Never leave a pet in a car even on a mild day. Pets can suffer brain damage and die from heatstroke.

Helpful tips to keeping your pets safe in extreme heat:

• Walk in the early morning and late evening when it is cooler.

• Carry water with you.

• Limit exercise on hot days.

• Avoid surfaces that absorb heat, like asphalt, pavement, metal, sand, and car seats. These materials absorb heat from the sun and can stay hot for hours (even after the sun has gone down). Temperatures on these surfaces can exceed 145 degrees.

• Fans, cool surfaces, frozen treats, kiddie pools, cool washcloths, and sprinklers can all help keep them cooler on hot days.

• Make sure fresh water and a cool place to rest is available at all times.

Note: Some information from the Facebook page Red and Howling