Happy Independence Day!

Sudden sparks and big booms from fancy 4th of July fireworks can send the calmest horse sky high. What can horse owners to do prevent panic and keep their horses safe during 4th of July fireworks and festivities?


Here are 12 tips for keeping horses calm and secure on the 4th of July, as firecrackers explode and fireworks light up the sky.  

  1. Stage all 4th of July fireworks (and 4th of July bonfires) away from horses. Barns, stables and horse facilities contain many flammable items, such as hay, straw and wood shavings. A single spark can prove disastrous in a horse barn.
  2. Don't ride horses during 4th of July fireworks. The most docile horses can come unglued (even in an indoor arena) at the sudden sounds of firecrackers and 4th of July fireworks.
  3. Check stall doors and pasture fences to ensure horse containment structures are secure during 4th of July fireworks.
  4. Keep horses together with familiar equine companions during 4th of July fireworks and celebrations.
  5. Evaluate options, such as stabling pasture-boarded horses indoors overnight on Independence Day or during 4th of July fireworks displays.
  6. Remove horses to an alternate farm or facility during 4th of July fireworks, if displays will be conducted nearby.
  7. Play soothing music (on a radio or CD player) around horses to drown out noise during 4th of July fireworks.
  8. Place cotton balls (or cotton wool) inside horses' ears to block loud 4th of July fireworks noises. This is a tried-and-true trick, taken from hunters and parade equestrians.
  9. Consider sedating horses for 4th of July fireworks displays. Equine veterinarians can prescribe calming medications for this purpose.
  10. Check equine or equestrian center insurance policies for liability coverage, in case horses damage property (or injure other horses) during 4th of July fireworks.
  11. Review fire safety procedures at stables or equestrian center, just in case.
  12. Pick up the pieces after 4th of July fireworks displays. Look for fallen tree branches and pieces of spent fireworks. Be particularly cautious with firecrackers, fireworks and other incendiary products that do not appear to have been spent.

Have a happy & safe Fourth of July!

If you have any questions or concerns regarding your horse and fireworks,
don't hesitate to contact us - we are available 24/7 at 253-535-6999! 

Tacoma Equine Hospital
3112 156th Street East, Tacoma, WA 98446

253-535-6999  ~  www.tacomaequine.com 

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