Owners looking for pets spooked by fireworks

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The day after the Fourth of July is considered the busiest day for animal shelters because people are looking for their lost pets. Fireworks spook animals all week, especially on July 4. Many end up running off.

Garnet Ramey visited Indianapolis Animal Care and Control on Friday, looking for English Bulldog, Lucy.

“I’m here to pick up my best friend’s dog, who had a dog-sitter, who accidentally lost the dog last night. The fireworks somehow got her and she got out of the house,” Ramey said.

Ramey was not the only person at Animal Care and Control Friday morning. It was busy as folks waited for IACC’s lost pet tours, which take place every 30 minutes.

“It’s all the same situation. Every one of them (is looking for their pet). (There were) nine of us sitting here,” Ramey said.

Summer is one of the busiest seasons for places like Indianapolis Animal Care and Control. Besides taking in stray dogs and cats afraid of fireworks, they deal with some surrenders and possible overcrowding issues.

“July 5 is traditionally the biggest shelter intake day across the country because so many dogs are scared off by the fireworks,” Dawn Contos said.

Contos is the community outreach coordinator for Indianapolis Animal Care and Control. She said people need to look around their home and neighborhood first, before they visit their facility to look for pets. By the second day, people need to stop by a shelter.

“We tell people (to) please come and look because that’s the worst thing to not know where your pet is,” Contos said.

While Ramey did not find Lucy at IACC, she said she will visit them and other organizations again.

“I hope I don’t have to come back tomorrow. I hope my Lucy is sitting on the porch,” Ramey said.

Indianapolis Animal Care and Control works closely with Indy Lost Pet Alert. The organization compiles lost-and-found reports online. Since they started operating, which was about a year ago, they have reunited people with 2,700 pets.

“This past week alone, we’ve received (more than) 300 lost-and-found alerts. It’s unbelievable how many people are looking for their pets or have lost their pets and a lot of them are reporting them due to fireworks,” Danielle Beck said.

Beck works with Indy Lost Pet Alert. She said she isn’t surprised Indianapolis Animal Care and Control is busy the day after the holiday.

“I’m actually thrilled that the lobby was full here just because that means that people are coming here to look for their pets,” Beck said.

People are urged to check with the animal care and control facility and/or shelter in their county. Every shelter has a different policy on how long they keep animals.

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