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A safe and happy Fourth of July for your pets

Did you know that shelters across America see a surge of lost pets on the Fourth of July?

Fireworks, picnics and travel can cause pets to become disoriented and frightened. Here are some tips for both before and during the holiday to keep your pet safe.

• Make sure your pet has an identification tag that is up to date. Ensure that your pet has a microchip. Microchips drastically increase a pets chance of being reunited with his or her owner. It is one of the first things that the Lycoming County SPCA scans when a lost pet comes in.

• If your pet has a microchip, double-check that the information is correct. It is very common for us to be delighted to find a microchip on a lost pet, only to have the information come back invalid or out of date.

• Check that your yard is secure, especially if you know that the neighbors may be setting off fireworks.

During the celebrations

• Consider putting your pets in a safe, escape-proof room or crate during parties and fireworks.

• Hang out with your pet, safely inside, to help them feel comforted.

• Keep sparklers, glow sticks and fireworks away from curious pets.

• If your pets are outside with you, remember to check on them more frequently if it is hot and humid out.

• Watch pets carefully around barbecue grills.

• Be sure to clean up the sparkler and firework debris after the fact so that your yard is safe for your pets. Also keep an eye out for food scraps and other items, such as kabob skewers.

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