INDEPENDENCE DAY

How to prepare yourself, pets for the noise

Private, public firework displays scheduled in Wissahickon

(Credit: Elisha Terada / Unsplash.com)

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While the celebration of our nation’s independence is often accompanied by massive displays of colorful pyrotechnics, not everyone enjoys fireworks. It is important to note the locations and times of displays coming up in and around the Wissahickon area so that you can either attend, for those that love the sights and sounds of The Fourth, or prepare, if you or a loved one, or a four-legged furry family member prefers to avoid the scene.

 

The following displays are slated for the surrounding communities:

 

July 3, Green Valley Country Club, 9:15 p.m.

July 3, Cedarbrook Country Club, 9 p.m.

July 3, Bluestone Country Club, 9:30 p.m.

July 5, Blue Bell Country Club, 9:15 p.m.

July 5, Ambler Kiwanis at Wissahickon HS, approx. 9 p.m.


For more on the displays throughout the Greater Philadelphia area, check out our July 4 guide here.

For those with PTSD

Those who served our country in combat, have been through explosions or gun violence, or similar traumatic experiences can often find loud events, such as fireworks or concerts, to be distressing. The noisy celebrations can trigger the past, prompting flashbacks, anxiety, or stress. Whether you are diagnosed or not, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can make the July 4 holiday a stressful one.


According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, some tips to manage fireworks include:

    

  • Pause, and remind yourself you are safe
  • Try box breathing: a four-count inhale, four-count hold, four-count exhale, four-count hold, repeat
  • Be mindful, and focus on another sensation like a sour candy or spicy food
  • Try the Mindfulness Coach app, a free app by the VA offering assistance for PTSD
  • Remind yourself the sounds and sights are temporary
  • Talk with someone about your concerns
  • Consider headphones or earplugs to lessen sounds


Additional long-term changes can also help to improve your feelings around fireworks, such as:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy 
  • Journaling your thoughts, worries
  • Self care techniques
  • Select activities you enjoy (avoiding loud events may be a short-term fix, but may also worsen your PTSD over time)
  • Discover coping mechanisms that work for you

For our four-legged family members

Humans are not the only ones that may not enjoy every aspect of the Fourth of July. Some pets may also be afraid of fireworks. There are some key tips to keep your pet safe during these celebrations that can go a long way at protecting them (and you) from any incidents. Small steps ahead of the fireworks can help you pets to stay safe and feel secure during the celebrations.


The American Kennel Club suggests that pet owners:

  1. Keep animals away from firework displays.
  2. Don’t leave your pet outdoors when fireworks are expected.
  3. Be sure your pet has proper ID in the event that they should run.
  4. Create a safe space for your pet, like a crate or special toy or treat.
  5. Play white noise or music for your pet.
  6. Comfort your dog during displays.
  7. Walk your dog prior to fireworks.


 Your pet’s veterinarian can help you with more detailed ways to assist your pet in a safe way.

Enjoy your holiday

Fireworks are not a mandatory part of celebrating any special occasion. Find ways that work for you to enjoy your holiday weekend. We, at Wissahickon Now, wish you and yours a safe and happy Independence Day!

author

Melissa S. Finley

Melissa is a 26-year veteran journalist who has worked for a wide variety of publications over her enjoyable career. A summa cum laude graduate of Penn State University’s College of Communications with a degree in journalism, Finley is a single mother to two teens, Seamus and Ash, her chi The Mighty Quinn, and the family’s two cats, Archimedes and Stinky. She enjoys bringing news to readers far and wide.

Monday, July 22, 2024
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