7:04am

Wed July 13, 2011
Eastern and Central Kentucky

Animal Advocates Protest Fireworks Rules

Another group is coming forward to voice its concerns about Lexington's latest round of fireworks. Some wildlife advocates say this year's Fourth of July did more than frighten dogs and cats. Nora Ward has rescued eastern cottontail rabbits for the Kentucky Wildlife Center for three years now. In the past, the fireworks had little effect on her animals, but she says this year, with the larger and louder fireworks allowed by state law, things changed. In an emotional plea to the Urban County Council, Ward said the noise was too much.

"They would shudder from the noise and vibrations and finally just lay down and die. Five of the eight bunnies in my care have died from fright," she said.

Councilman Kevin Stinnett says the number of complaints - including those from concerned pet owners and animal advocates - tripled this year, leading the council to look into restricting the hours residents are allowed to use the fireworks. An ordinance could come as early as August or September.