Every year, the Fourth of July and the days that follow are the busiest of the year, according to DACC officials. “We were almost at capacity last week and many new dogs were coming into the Castaic Animal Care Center,” said Karen Stepp, Castaic Animal Care Center Manager. “We put out a plea with social media and networking that we needed animals to get adopted, and the community stepped up and we had 12 adoptions of dogs (Monday). This really helped to free up kennel space.” However, Fourth of July celebrations come with noise and bright lights that cause many pets to get scared and run away. Reports of lost animals pour in days after, as pets continue to be dropped off at the center, she said. “We still worry that we will have an influx of dogs that will get out on the Fourth of July due to fireworks, so we continuously need people to be aware of these things and make sure their animal are kept indoors, microchipped, licensed and safe,” said Stepp. If pets do get lost, the DACC recommends that owners visit local animal care centers daily, as it may take days or weeks for your pet to appear in the shelter. If there is a chance that the pet wandered outside of the Santa Clarita Valley, owners are encouraged to check other animal care centers, as well.