Fireworks and your Dog – by Cherie Mallory
Does your dog cower at the sound of thunder? If so, it is highly likely that they won’t like fireworks much either. Dogs’ ears are extremely sensitive, which helps them know when danger is near. Here are some ways to help your dog relax when it comes time for the fireworks to come out.
Keep Them Indoors
Before the fireworks start, make sure your dog is indoors with the windows and curtains closed. If they have a crate, you can even go as far as covering the crate with a blanket to provide them with that added sense of security. If you have a basement, this would be the best option because the sound is muffled even further.
Get Them Some Exercise
If you know there is a firework display later that night, make sure to get your dog out during the day and get them plenty of exercise. This way they won’t have a build up of energy that will add to their anxiety, and they will sleep like a baby during the event.
Check Your Outdoor Enclosures
A lot of times your dog can’t help but need to potty during a stressful event. Prior to this be sure to check that there are no holes are openings in your outdoor enclosures. This is because your dog is very likely to go into flight mode and will do anything to escape. The last thing you want to be doing is chasing your dog down the street while they are freaking out.
Make Sure Dog Tags are Updated
Should your dog happen to get away from you, you want to make sure that they can be found. Dogs are fast, especially when scared. This way someone else might be able to locate them and get your best friend back to you quickly.
Another wonderful way to keep your dog calm during fireworks is to offer them distractions. By giving them a chew toy to work on and offering them their favorite treats, they will be more focused on enjoying themselves and less focused on the loud noises.
TV and Radio
If you want to go enjoy the fireworks yourself and have to leave your best friend at home, put something soothing on the TV or radio. This will go a long way in easing their anxiety and will allow you to come home to a calm and gentle dog.
There is a few ways you can desensitize your dog to fireworks if you start working with them from a young age. While they are doing something they enjoy you can play a video on low in the background of fireworks. You can do this several times a day and gradually raise the volume each time. If they show signs of being afraid just lower it again and start from the beginning, increasing it at a slower pace. Keep doing this until you can play the video loudly and they don’t react negatively.
Best of luck!!