New Billboard Urges Everyone to Keep Animals Safe This Fourth of July

'To Animals, Fireworks Really Are "Bombs Bursting in Air,"' PETA Warns After Committee Rejects Silent Fireworks Offer

For Immediate Release:
June 28, 2017

Brooke Rossi 202-483-7382

Saginaw, Mich. – Just in time for Independence Day, a new PETA billboard only 5 miles from Saginaw’s fireworks site reminds guardians to watch out for their animal companions during the loud fireworks display. The billboard comes after the Saginaw Area Fireworks Committee rejected PETA’s offer of $5,000 toward its fundraising goal—if it agreed to use increasingly popular and environmentally friendly silent fireworks.

The billboard is located on Interstate 75 North, facing south, before Exit 151 Reese/Caro, where it will remain through Sunday, July 9.

“For both wildlife and domesticated animals, fireworks are a petrifying, explosive nightmare that can cause them to injure themselves and flee for their lives,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “Until Saginaw and other towns switch to soundless fireworks—which are every bit as glorious and exciting as the loud ones—PETA asks people to learn how to protect their animal companions.”

Animal shelters nationwide report an increase in the number of lost dogs and cats following traditional fireworks displays. PETA encourages families to keep animals indoors (and, if possible, stay with them), never leave them tethered outside where they can strangle or injure themselves in their panic, and turn on the TV or music to help drown out the frightening noises.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—notes that fireworks also take a toll on wildlife: In the Netherlands, where fireworks are regularly ignited on New Year’s Eve, a team of international researchers used weather radar to track birds and found that tens of thousands of them took flight just as a fireworks display began and continued flying throughout the show, a disruption to their normal behavior and flight patterns.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind