Prepare your pets for fireworks, festivals and summer activities


Steamboat Springs, CO, June 28, 2022 – With summer events in full swing, please remember that your furry, four-legged friend depends on you to keep them happy, healthy, and safe. Not only will we be celebrating Independence Day with fireworks and family get-togethers, but the influx of tourists and their animals also increases exponentially during summertime. Please ensure that your dogs are fully vaccinated before taking them to dog parks, concerts, or other gatherings where unfamiliar animals and people are present. Also be aware of hot pavement and/or asphalt and try and walk your dog on grassy areas. Just because we enjoy these types of activities does not mean that our animals do.

Did you know that more pets are lost during the 4th of July holiday than any other time of the year? This is especially true for a resort community that has tourists and dogs that are unfamiliar with the area or activities. Here are some ways to make the holiday safer for your pet.

Make sure your pet has identification.

Please ensure that your pet has a collar, tag, and microchip to identify you as the owner. Microchips are inexpensive and is the only form of identification that does not get lost. Make sure the information on the tag and microchip is up to date. This will lead to a much faster reunion between you and your furry friend.

Create a comfort zone.

The most important thing you can do as a dog owner is to provide your pet with a safe space at home. Create an escape-proof location and make it a calm environment. A crate is best, but a small area like a garage, bathroom or closet can also work if there aren’t a lot of windows or sliding glass doors. Shut the windows, lower the blinds, provide a comfy bed or protective box for them to relax in and give them toys to distract them. Leaving a tv or radio on helps compete with the outside sounds and music helps drown out the sound of the fireworks. And of course, always keep them indoors!

Tire them out.

Give your pets plenty of exercise before the fireworks begin. Walking your dog or having an extended play session with your cat can lower their general anxiety levels.


Fireworks and unfamiliar people and surroundings can cause animals to have increased anxiety and a sense of extreme uncertainty. This could cause them to seek shelter away from the safety of their owners. Even if your pet is normally good around strangers, take into consideration the heightened level of stress they will be experiencing and do not bring them to parties or other types of gatherings. And using fireworks around animals not only runs the risk of potential injury but it also increases the likelihood of your pet running away in a desperate attempt to feel safe.

Ask your vet.

For extra anxious dogs, you can visit your veterinarian to get some anti-anxiety medication.

If your pet is lost:

If your pet does become lost, it is highly possible that they will end up at Routt County Humane Society (RCHS). Lost and stray animals picked up in Steamboat Springs and Unincorporated Routt County are brought to RCHS. Please check our website at if your pet is missing.

Your pet is likely hiding somewhere in your neighborhood. Most dogs are found within a two-mile radius of their home.

If you find a lost pet, try to find the owner.

Most pets are found in the neighborhoods they live in, so social media platforms such as Next Door and Facebook are all extremely effective at reuniting pets. If you find a pet, ask your neighbors if they recognize them and post flyers throughout the community.

If the animal appears sick, injured, or dangerous, please contact Steamboat Springs Animal Control or Routt County Animal Control.

If you can’t care for the animal, please contact animal control, or bring the pet to RCHS, located at 760 Critter Court, Steamboat Springs, CO.

If you find a pet in a neighboring community, please contact law enforcement in that area so that they can help locate the owner and please resist taking it home. Owners will be looking in their neighborhoods/towns/cities for their pets.

By following these simple steps, your furry friend will be much happier while also enjoying summer activities with you.

Routt County Humane Society is a 501©(3) not-for profit organization established in 1985 with the mission of being a nonprofit community resource that helps animals in need through sheltering, adoption, education, veterinary services and community outreach.  

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