Animal shelters full of dogs after July 4th fireworks

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SAN DIEGO — Nearly five dozen lost dogs were being housed at San Diego County animal shelters Tuesday following the three-day holiday weekend, which was capped by canine-unfriendly fireworks displays.

County Animal Services officials said dogs are known to panic at the noise of fireworks and try to escape.

As of late Tuesday afternoon, 59 dogs were at shelters and more were expected. Last year, 67 were brought to shelters within a few days of July 4, according to Animal Services.

“If you’ve lost your pet, check the Animal Services lost-and-found web page,” said Animal Services Director Dawn Danielson. “We post photos of animals as soon as each animal is kenneled at the shelter.”

She also suggested registering a lost dog with Finding Rover, a free facial recognition app at http://www.findingrover.com that’s used by the public and county Animal Services.

Users can upload a photo of the animal and the app’s database, as well as those of the three county shelters, will be searched to see if any of the faces of lost or found canines are a match.

Owners of lost dogs can also post signs in their neighborhood, since someone who lives down the street might be keeping the pet.

Those who find a lost dog are asked by county officials to move the animal to a safe place on their property — they can be lured by a treat — and then call Animal Services at 619-767-2675. An officer will be sent out to pick up the dog.

Animal Services will contact the owners of dogs that have identification. If they’re not picked up by July 12, they’ll be put up for adoption the next day. Dogs without ID will become available for adoption if not claimed within three days.