Did you know that more dogs run away on the Forth of July than any other day of the year? According to The Humane Society of the America fireworks are mostly to blame.

Experts say that dogs and other pets not only react to the loud sounds of fireworks but the accompanying sudden flashes and burning smells can also be overwhelming to your furry friends. These sounds and smells are likely unfamiliar to your dogs, which can be frightening.  Running away is a survival instinct for dogs, which is why they tend to take off when scared by pyrotechnics.

So what can you do? First and foremost, always make sure your dog is wearing their collar. If your dog is not micro-chipped, consider making an appointment with your vet as soon as possible.  Experts says microchips can be the difference between lost and found for your dog.

The Humane Society also suggests NOT taking your dog with you to see a fireworks display, or a party that will have them. While you might want to keep your fur babies close, the noise of the fireworks, unfamiliar settings, and large crowds can all add to your dog's anxiety. If your pet is home alone during fireworks displays, make sure they have their favorite toy or blanket, or try a t-shirt that smells like you, anything that makes them feel more secure and safe. Always keep windows and curtains closed.

Some other helpful tips include drowning out the sound of fireworks with a white noise machine, or music. While it might be too late this year, in the future exposing your dog to the sound of fireworks by playing video clips that gradually get louder and louder in the weeks leading up to the holiday so your dog gets used to the noise. Some people have reported success using a Thunder Shirt, a jacket that applies minor pressure which seems to calm many animals.

We hope you and your pets have a happy and safe 4th of July!