For Immediate Release:
December 30, 2020
Brooke Rossi 202-483-7382
Tampa, Fla. – Because Tampa Bay’s New Year’s Eve fireworks display is still on for this year, even as cities across the country and around the world have canceled similar events because of rising numbers of COVID-19 cases, PETA is sharing these potentially lifesaving tips.
Fireworks are anything but celebratory to cats and dogs. When animals hear these explosions, many of them panic and jump over fences, break chains, or even break through windows in an attempt to escape the terrifying noises.
Fireworks also cause wildlife to flee onto roads and into buildings or abandon their nests.
People can help protect animals by taking the following precautions:
- Keep cats and dogs indoors. Never leave animals tethered or penned outside—they can hang themselves if they leap over a fence while trying to run from the noise.
- If you witness someone setting off illegal fireworks, call the authorities right away.
- Never take animals with you to watch fireworks displays! If you know in advance that there will be fireworks in your area, try to stay home with your animals and calm them.
- Close your windows and curtains. To help drown out the sounds, use fans or white noise and turn on the TV or a radio that’s tuned to a classical music station.
- Purchase a ThunderShirt, which can help your dog or cat cope with the stress of fireworks. Other ways to keep animals calm include playing specially formulated music from iCalm and giving them the natural supplement melatonin, which is available at health food stores. (Consult your veterinarian first.)
- Make sure that your animal companion is microchipped and wearing a collar or harness with an up-to-date identification tag—just in case.
- Take dogs for a long walk or a run in the evening before fireworks start to help tire them out.
PETA has also released actors Edward James Olmos’ and Bellamy Young’s PETA videos in which they urge families to keep dogs and cats safe during fireworks. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.