County animal shelters saw increase in calls during July Fourth holiday

FILE PHOTO: Existing dogs and cats at shelters can were up for adoption for $17.76 from July 2 to July 6 to make way for the thousands more who entered the shelters this holiday season. Best Friends Animal Society courtesy photo

It was a busy Fourth of July season for local agencies this year.

The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station responded to 116 calls for illegal fireworks and the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control responded to thousands of calls for lost animals throughout the county.

According to the department’s Public Information Officer Don Barre, all seven of the county’s animal care and control centers saw an increase in calls during the holiday week compared to last year.

From July 4 to July 7, the county received approximately 1,000 calls each day.  The holiday’s fireworks shows can cause animals, like dogs, to get spooked and run away from homes and into streets.

The noises can also cause pets to jump fences, break chains, tear through screen doors and leap through glass doors.

On July Fourth, the centers surprisingly received the least amount of requests with 726 calls coming in throughout the county.  The following day the centers received 1,299 calls, an increase of 44 percent compared to last year.

The animal control centers also received 1,220 calls July 6, an increase of 40 percent from last year, and 1,096 calls on July 7, an increase of 33 percent from last year.

Pet owners who lost their animals during the Fourth of July holiday were encouraged to visit local animal care centers and leave information about their pets with the agencies.

“Owners are only contacted if their pet has a traceable ID(s) such as a dog license, personal tag or registered microchip,” Barre said.

To prepare for the influx of animals, the Department of Animal Care and Control shared pet safety tips with the public and the Castaic Animal Shelter held a sale of shelter animals to make space for the lost pets.

The department also urged residents to microchip their pets before the holiday.

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