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Fireworks can spook dogs into running away, but Bend shelter reports fewer strays

(Update: Adding video, shelter comments)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Independence Day is a time of patriotism and celebration, but it's also a time of year that can be quite a scare for dogs and other animals spooked by the loud sounds.

"It's the big booms that really scare them," Redmond's Brightside Animal Center manager, Patricia Bowling, said Monday.

The loud displays of fireworks that rumbled through the night can affect the sensitive ears of dogs, and may even cause physical damage.

The natural response for dogs exposed to blaring sounds can be running away. So it comes to no surprise that pet owners may be missing their furry best friends.

"Most of the time for the next few days, we'll be matching up those animals that may have been lost," Humane Society of Central Oregon Community Relations Manager Lynne Ouchida said.

When asked how many strays end up at the BrightSide shelter, Bowling said it's about the same every year.

"Anywhere for 6-10, 5-10 dogs that will come in during fireworks," she said.

Nonetheless, with the current public-use fireworks ban, Ouchida said she is optimistic that fewer strays will come in, as they usually receive the most on the day after the Fourth.

"I am astounded that the banning of fireworks have had this good of an impact on animals," Ouchida said.

So far Monday, she said, HSCO had taken in just two stray dogs. One arrived on Saturday, which Ouchida said she believed was because of the fireworks displays preceding the Fourth. The other was brought to the shelter Monday.

Both animal shelter managers advised that it's always better to play white noise or put animals in an environment that can muffle any loud sounds that could alarm them.

When it comes to tracking your pets, Bowling suggested keeping them inside during fireworks, but there's an extra measure pet owners can take.

"If you can microchip your dog, then that's much better," to ensure a happy reunion, Bowling said.

If you or someone you know lost an animal, Ouchida and Bowling said to report it to your local shelter.

Bend / Central Oregon / Local News / News / Pets / Redmond / video - DO NOT USE

Bola Gbadebo

Bola Gbadebo is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Bola here.



  1. Lol @ bowling “will come in during fireworks”
    Spoken like an ad for a hotel, do they just come in bowling?
    Did she say that really? Lol, you do put the bright in brightside.

    1. Aww, feel better now, having insulted someone completely unnecessarily? What a wonderful human you seem to be! Quite charming, for sure. Those “bright” people at the low- kill shelter do a lot of good things for animals! I salute you, Brightside!

    2. Leaner, The phrase was “Bowling suggested keeping them inside during fireworks,…” But you’ve already demonstrated that your reading comprehension is quite poor. Thank you Ms Bowling and all those at Brightside for the wonderful work on behalf of the animals. You guys rock !!

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