fireworks & puppy

Photo credit: Beverly & Pack via Flickr

I found that I’ve escaped population in recent years on the 4th in favor of quality quiet time camping or in a cabin. My dogs and I didn’t like the noise and opted for a more mellow Independence Day experience. In addition to the noise that frightens wild and domesticated animals, there are fumes floating around after the fireworks displays, so we decided not to be counted among those who participated.

Why are fireworks a hazard?

  1. Fireworks are NOT for the birds! Birds can be maimed, killed or burned by fireworks if they come into contact with them. Even if they don’t come into direct contact with a spark, they can be deafened, blinded and/or disoriented by the flashes and noises. Fireworks have been blamed for major bird kills, topping 4,000 deaths from one fireworks display.
  2. Many dogs like fireworks about as well as birds do. Dogs have been injured and killed when fireworks frighten them. Some have made panicked adrenaline leaps, digs and other escapes to cope with the fear of bangs and flashes, and they go missing.
  3. Bursting in Air (Pollution): Fireworks contain particulates, toxins and heavy metals that are exploded into the air, later to settle on the ground and in water.
  4. $$$: Fireworks displays, even in smaller municipalities, can cost anywhere from $15k-$50,000, and up. Maybe that money could go to feeding and housing veterans?
  5. Danger to humans: Even though we have all heard the stats on how people get burned every year to varying degrees, roman candles and sparklers pop up even in kids’ hands all over the country, every summer. The larger fireworks displays seem to inspire backyard amateurs to try their own.
US Flag & Bird

Photo Credit: M. H. Stephens via Flickr

People who like to keep it social AND want to skip the fireworks have these fun alternatives:

  1. Campfire fun: Veg dogs and S’mores with Dandies
  2. Light up the night: Stock up on glow sticks, glow-in-the-dark chalks and paints, and get creative.
  3. Outdoor movies: Set up a screen and invite some friends to watch movies with 4th themes, like, Independence Day, The Natural, or Captain America. Add some popcorn and snacks for a full celebration!
  4. Run a 4th of July 5k. Then go to bed early.
  5. Lounging: Have a simple night of lemonade and watching the fireflies!