It'll soon be that time of the year when pet owners across East Texas will have to keep a closer eye on their pets because of sudden loud and unfamiliar noises.

Those loud and unfamiliar noises will come from fireworks that are being set off around the Fourth of July as we celebrate the birth of our great nation.

Those exploding fireworks that create special shapes, sparkles, and loud booms make us all go 'oooh' and 'ahhh' terrify neighborhood pets and wildlife. So much so that outdoor pets could end up jumping fences and running off and getting lost in Tyler and Longview.

A study was conducted by the SPCA and found that nearly 1 in 5 pets go missing after being frightened by loud noises, such as thunderstorms and fireworks. Pet Amber Alert reports that reports from lost or missing pets jumped by 30% to 60% during the July 4th holiday.

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To keep your pet or livestock from pulling a Houdini, Copperfield, or Shin Lim act during the fireworks, it would be a good idea to bring them inside and wrap them in a blanket or a thunder jack to help calm their nerves.

As far as keeping your pet safe during fireworks season, here are some additional steps you can take to keep them from being a runaway:

1. Keep your pet indoors.

2. Create comfortable safe places like a kennel, closet or the basement and make sure they have direct access.

3. Provide additional comforts, like their special toy or treats.

4. Communicate with your veterinarian. If your pet has extreme reactions to loud noises your vet could prescribe a gentle sedative to take the edge off and promote calmness.

5. Don’t use distraction as a calming mechanism, but do try music. Yelling at them and telling them to calm down could create more chaos. Music may calm them, but again, don't play it too loud.

6. Have all their identification in place and make sure their microchip information is current.

7. Know your local animal control agency and how to contact them just in case your pet does go missing.

Protect your pet this 4th of July and keep them comfortable. Above all, make sure they are wearing a tag that has their name and your contact phone number on it.

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