Dogs and fireworks don't mix. Do your dog a favor and leave them at home this Fourth of July.

Fancy the thought of bringing your beloved family pet to Fourth of July festivities like barbecue’s, firework displays or block parties?

Think again.

Given the season’s sweltering temperatures and an increasing statistic of missing pets during the holiday, experts from the Arizona Animal Welfare League and the Arizona Humane Society urge residents to keep Fido cool and safe indoors.

Bretta Nelson, a spokeswoman for the Arizona Humane Society, said the Fourth of July is a “holiday in which more pets go missing than any other day of the year.”

On a normal week, according to Nelson, the shelter takes in more than 450 stray animals. That number increased last year by 60 animals during the week of July 4.

“The other place we see an increase is the amount of people who come in looking for lost pets,” said Nelson. “Last year it was just insane.”

The Arizona Animal Welfare League recommends keeping pets safe from the noise of fireworks, in a quiet, sheltered, and escape-proof area inside your home.

However if your pets do end up joining you in celebrations, the group also suggests pets have a microchip, wear identification tags, and are never left inside a hot car.

But the bottom line, according to Nelson, is to keep your pets indoors.

“It’s well worth it,” she added.

Tips from the Arizona Humane Society on what to do if your pet is lost include having a good photo of pet handy in the event you have to create a flyer, post missing pet on Craigslist, and file a report with Missing Mutts (and Cats) by calling (480) 898-8914.

For more information on keeping your pets safe this summer, visit the Arizona Animal Welfare League’s website at www.aawl.org or the Arizona Humane Society’s website at www.azhumane.org.

• Diana Martinez is freelancing this summer for the Ahwatukee Foothills News. Reach her at thedianamartinez@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter @_dianamartinez.

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