The Fourth of July is one of the busiest times of year for the Laramie Animal Control, and they have some tips for keeping your pets safe this holiday.

Household pets, especially dogs, can be frightened of the commotion and noise brought on by celebrations and fireworks. Rene Sollars, Animal Control Officer, says there are steps people can take to keep Fido safe this weekend.

Sollars says the best thing people can do to make sure their pooch doesn’t make a break for it this year is to put the dog in a secure location where he can’t hear outside commotion quite as well. Turning on the radio, a television or a sound machine can also help. People should make sure all doors and windows are closed and secure so if a dog does try to get outside there are several barriers in place.

In addition, Sollars says a great practice is to give the dog a special “high value” treat for distraction. This means it is a treat that the dog does not often get. It could be a special bone, toy or even putting peanut butter inside a ball. These kinds of things can help keep the dog distracted from what is happening outside. This works best if it is something that the dog doesn’t get on a regular basis.

She also says there are products that can help dogs to feel more secure.  These are garments for the dog with the purpose of holding him close and helping him feel better. She says some animals respond very well to these kinds of products.

In addition, she has a warning for people using their own fireworks. Dogs can often be confused or have a prey drive kick in when fireworks are moving, making noise, changing colors and sending off sparks. Dogs may try to grab or snap at fireworks out of fear, confusion, or instinct. If fireworks are near she advises people to keep their dogs indoors or on a leash so they won’t get hurt attempting to grab one.

If an animal is lost over the holiday, it is best to check with animal control first. You can do so by checking the website, calling them at 721-5386, or by going into the shelter. She adds that they will not be open on the holiday, but if anyone finds a lost pet they can call the non-emergency dispatch number at 721-2526 and someone can meet them at the shelter to keep the animal safe. The shelter will be open on Saturday, July 5 at noon.

She adds that many social media pages are out there for people to report lost or found animals.

For more information about Laramie Animal Control, visit their website.