Published on December 29, 2023

City of San Antonio Animal Care Services Department   


SAN ANTONIO (December 29, 2023) – As San Antonians gear up for family get-togethers and upcoming celebrations, they should keep in mind pets can become very frightened by all the noise and commotion we take for granted on New Year’s Eve. Planning ahead and using some basic precautions can help make this holiday a festive one for all of your four-legged friends. San Antonio Animal Care Services (SAACS) offers these tips to protect your pet as we head into 2024:

  • Pets do not like loud noises. This year, residents can leave pets comfortably at home and enjoy Celebrate SA downtown. The City’s official New Year’s Eve party kicks off at 6 p.m. with fireworks popping off as the clock strikes midnight. Fireworks are illegal within the city of San Antonio. Firecrackers of any kind should never be set off around pets.
  • Give your pet some peace and quiet. A closed-off area inside your home can be a blessing for a pet nervous about all the noise and commotion associated with festivities. Remember that some pets get destructive when they are frightened, therefore be sure to remove anything around the area that your pet could destroy. Try to provide some toys to occupy your pet while you are out. If your pet is crate trained, make sure they can curl up inside if they get scared. Fresh food and water are a must, and a treat or two would not hurt either.
  • Never leave pets unattended outside, even in a fenced yard or on a tether. Pets can overreact when they are scared, and that dog who never left your yard before could easily dig a hole under the fence to escape the noise. Fear of outside gatherings can also cause your pet to become dangerously entangled in their tether. By law, tethered dogs must have a properly fitting collar, and chain tethers of any weight are not allowed per San Antonio’s animal care ordinance.
  • Protect your pet from pranksters. Many animal cruelty cases start as what someone considers a “harmless” prank. But there is nothing harmless about hurting a pet. Bring outdoor pets indoors, at least for the evening. SAACS will investigate anyone suspected of cruelly treating any animal.
  • A collar and microchip ID can help your pet get back home if they get lost. Roaming animals stand the risk of being picked up by the City’s Animal Care Officers. Your pet’s ID is more than their ticket home. City microchip licenses are the law and can be implanted anytime during regular SAACS business hours.
  • When in doubt, consult the experts. Your veterinarian and local pet supply stores have a variety of remedies to soothe your pet’s nerves and set your mind at ease as well.


SAACS will close at 2 p.m. on New Year’s Eve and will remain closed for New Year’s Day but Animal Care Officers are still on the job. The shelter will re-open at 11 a.m. on January 2 for residents interested in adopting a pet or who may have lost their pet during the holiday.