Ahead of the Fourth of July, PETA's Ads Remind Everyone That Explosions Can Terrify Dogs, Cats, and Others
For Immediate Release:
June 26, 2019
Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382
Savannah, Ga. – Just in time for Independence Day—and because Georgia passed a law allowing people to buy and set off everything from bottle rockets to firecrackers—PETA has placed ads inside 126 local buses. One design shows a dog and a cat alongside the words “4THeir Sakes, 4Get the Firecrackers! Fireworks Terrify Animals,” and the other reads, “To Animals, Fireworks Really Are ‘Bombs Bursting in Air.’ Keep Animals Safe Inside on July 4.”
“Fireworks sound exactly like ‘bombs bursting in air’ to animals who end up fleeing in terror—some never to be found again,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA is urging everyone to protect animals and other vulnerable members of the community by not setting off firecrackers—whether on July Fourth or any other day of the year.”
During fireworks displays, dogs have jumped fences, broken chains, torn through screens, and even leaped through glass doors in panicked attempts to escape the blasts. Animal shelters become inundated with lost animals, some of whom never make it back to their guardians. Fireworks can also be deeply disturbing to the elderly and people living with post-traumatic stress disorder and can aggravate the symptoms of those suffering from respiratory problems.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—noted numerous fireworks-related incidents concerning animals across the country last year alone. Among other incidents, in Michigan, a dog panicked and fled, only to be found later with his paw pads worn off from running so hard. A shelter in Texas reported a 50% increase in the number of animals brought in between July 4 and 6. And two shelters—in Phoenix and Mesa, Arizona—took in a total of 800 lost animals from the start of the fireworks to the end of July 5.
In addition to not setting off firecrackers themselves, people can protect their animal companions during community fireworks displays by keeping them indoors (and, if possible, staying with them), never leaving them tethered outside, closing the blinds, and turning on a loud fan or the television to help drown out the frightening noises. Guardians should also ensure that their animal companions are wearing collars with current identification tags and that they’re microchipped.
PETA opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. The group is also placing the ad on bus benches in Tallahassee, Florida, ahead of the holiday.
For more information, please visit PETA.org.