LA Animal Services Offers Pet Safety Tips For a Happy and Safe 4th of July Celebration

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LA Animal Services Offers Pet Safety Tips For a Happy and Safe 4th of July Celebration

Los Angeles, June 30, 2023 – The 4th of July holiday often includes celebrations that are fun for people, but can be frightening and even dangerous for our pets. The loud sounds and streaking lights from fireworks can scare animals, causing our pets to escape their homes.

“As you plan and celebrate Independence Day, LA Animal Services would like to share the following pet safety tips to help keep you and your pets safe before, during and after the 4th of July festivities,” said Annette Ramirez, Interim General Manager for LA Animal Services.

Be sure to follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram this week as we post daily reminders to keep these 4th of July pet safety tips top of mind.

Pet Safety for Dogs, Cats, and Rabbits

  • Stay away from fireworks. Fireworks are illegal in the City of Los Angeles. You can prevent potential burns, injuries, or possible ingestion by keeping all pets out of the vicinity of fireworks and asking friends and neighbors to avoid using them. Even if your pet does not seem obviously upset by fireworks, they can still cause harm to pets. 

To report fireworks in your neighborhood, you may call LAPD’s non-

emergency number at 877-275-5273 or file a complaint online.

  • No festive foods for pets. Avoid the urge to feed your pets table scraps or other foods intended for people. Be especially careful to keep them away from common foods that are potentially toxic to pets, like onions, chocolate, coffee, avocado, grapes, raisins, salt, and yeast dough.
  • Keep pets indoors and create a calm environment. The best way to keep your pets safe is to make sure they stay indoors and in an enclosed room, if possible. If you allow your dog outside, be sure that your gates or fence are secure or that your pet stays on a leash. 

If hosting a gathering with friends, try creating a safe place in your home where your pet can have some quiet space away from your visitors like a room that is off-limits to guests, or a familiar crate with their favorite toys or comforting blanket. For bunnies, provide extra places for them to hide within their living spaces (like an extra hidey-hole). You can also play calm and soothing music and keep the room as quiet as possible. In addition, closing doors, windows, and blinds will also help to distract pets from the sounds of fireworks.  

  • Ensure your pet has an up-to-date ID. Ensure your dog, cat, or rabbit has a microchip with your current contact information and that your canine companion and feline friend are wearing a collar or harness with an ID tag, and for dogs a current LA City license tag. For information on getting or renewing your dog’s license, visit:

If your pet is not microchipped, visit any of our six LA Animal Services Centers during business hours, Tuesdays through Fridays, from 8am to 5pm, and on weekends from 11am to 5pm. You can get your pet microchipped for free now through July 9 by visiting any of the six shelters. Free microchipping is available to pets now through July 9 (while supplies last). Most veterinary clinics also offer microchipping!

  • Look for your lost pet right away. According to an ASPCA survey, about half of missing dogs and a third of missing cats were found by searching their local neighborhoods. 

We encourage people who have lost their dog or cat to post a photo and

description of the pet on Petco Love Lost, which uses image-recognition technology to help lost pets get home, LA City Lost and Found Pets,, or, to improve the chances of reuniting with their companion animals. 

In addition to using social media, LA Animal Services also suggests that

individuals who are able to do so, provide temporary home care for lost or

stray companion animals in their neighborhood through our Shelter-at-Home program. Shelter-at-Home expands LA Animal Services’ foster program and increases community involvement in helping animals find their owners while enabling pets to be held in less stressful environments. 

If a member of the community finds a lost pet, is unable to locate the owner, nor is unable to provide temporary foster care, please call 888-452-7381 and make an appointment to bring the pet to the closest Animal Services Center. If the pet appears sick or injured, please bring them to the closest Animal Services Center immediately (no appointment needed). DO NOT LEAVE the dog or cat in an unsafe place. Pet abandonment is a violation of CA Penal Code 897.

4th of July Horse Safety

Fireworks and the 4th of July celebrations may also frighten and cause injury to horses. It is estimated that around 60 percent of all animals become distressed by the loud noises and streaking lights of fireworks, and horses are no exception being outdoors. 

To keep your equine friends safe, here are some key tips:

  • Consider moving your horse indoors for the evening if a fireworks display is due to take place in a location adjacent to where your horse grazes.
  • If you will be leaving your horse outside, make sure all fencing and gates are secure.
  • If you decide to stable your horse make sure they have a thick bed with high banks and that there is nothing obvious on which they could injure themselves.
  • Give your horse plenty of hay to keep him/her occupied
  • Play music or leave a radio on to muffle the sounds of fireworks and help to keep your horse calm.
  • Ear covers can help to reduce the noise.
  • After a fireworks event has taken place, check your fields/arena for spent fireworks as these could cause injury if ingested.

LA Animal Services Centers will be closed on Tuesday, July 4, 2023 to observe the 4th of July holiday. 

For more information about LA Animal Services, visit:

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Thank you to our lifesaving partners who help us care for #LACityPets