HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Fireworks may be pleasant to watch during a New Year’s celebration, but that is not the same case for our local pets and veterans.

Luis Quintanilla, Executive Director for the Humane Society of Harlingen, said fireworks pose a threat to pets because they are sensitive to loud noises and flashing lights. 

Quintanilla said their shelter is one of many that experience a spike in animals every year due to loud noises like on New Year’s. 

According to Quintanilla, pet owners need to be more vigilant of their pets and prepare them for the holiday festivity. 

“It’s frightening so the best thing to do is keep them indoors, keep them safe, and away from any of those fireworks,” said Quintanilla. 

Quintanilla said having pets microchipped is a huge help for shelters because it is an easy way to help return them to their owners if they get lost.

As for fellow veteran neighbors, it is important to be mindful due to some of them suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Although PTSD can happen to anyone, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states traumatic events are commonly known for affecting survivors like veterans.  

According to the U.S Departments of Veterans Affairs, loud noises like fireworks are an example of something that could trigger trauma. 

During loud events like New Year’s, it is important to know that there is help out there for anyone in need. The National Center for PTSD advises those that are struggling to do the following: 

Crisis Line: 1-800-273-8255 , press 1 or Send a text to 838255