Wondering how to help dogs with fireworks? Everyone is aware that dogs and fireworks do not go hand in hand. The proof is the Fourth of July when the highest number of dogs go missing.
It is a very distressing time for dogs, and they become very anxious. Dogs have a better sense of hearing than humans, and loud noises alarm them.
If it was in the hands of pet parents, no dog would have to suffer anything, let alone fireworks. If you too are a concerned pet parent wondering how to help dogs with a fear of fireworks, we have some tips for you.
Why Are Dogs Afraid Of Fireworks
Why is a dog scared of fireworks? Well, there are several reasons, and apart from exceptional hearing, here are some others:
- While humans anticipate fireworks and recognize that they mark special events, for dogs, it is just another day disrupted by loud noises and flashing lights. It is the factor of the unknown that scares dogs.
- Dogs may perceive fireworks as a threat, triggering a fight-or-flight response.
- The dog may feel trapped.
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How To Calm Dogs During Fireworks
1. Keep Your Dog Away From Fireworks
Take your dog for a long walk before the fireworks go off. Keep it indoors, safely in a room with someone, and lock the doors and windows. This is especially important for dogs who are at risk of bolting.
2. Create A Safe Space
Your dog will want refuge if it feels threatened. So, if you are wondering how to help dogs with fireworks, create a safe space where they can feel comfortable and protected.
Make your dog’s crate more comfortable by adding blankets and toys if it is crate-trained. If not, you can put it in a big closet or a bathroom, where it will feel safe.
Did you know? Dogs are den animals and like enclosed spaces.
3. Distract Your Dog With Tasty Treats
If you have an anxious dog, and you are wondering how to help anxious dogs with fireworks, distract them. Distraction is the best way to calm anxious dogs, and what better way to distract them than with tasty treats?
While some may be too nervous to eat anything, others cannot resist food. If you start the process early, when your pooch is a puppy, it may associate the sound of fireworks with treats.
Ever thought of giving your dog the citrus fruit clementine? Can dogs eat Clementine? The short answer is yes, in moderation. But there are some ifs and buts that you must know before feeding it to your dog.
4. Comfort Your Dog
If you have a dog scared of fireworks, shaking from fear and anxiety, you can keep it company and talk in a soothing and comforting tone to help it relax.
But first, you need to calm yourself. Dogs sense non-verbal communication by reading your body language, so if you are stressed or scared yourself, your dog will be stressed too.
5. Play White Noise
The answer to how to help dogs with fireworks noise is simple—cancel it with white noise. Although it cannot completely cancel out the noise of fireworks, it will be a distraction. If your dog has a favorite song, play that, or you can even turn on the TV to mask the noise of fireworks.
6. Desensitize Your Dog To The Sound Of Fireworks
If you suspect your dog is of the anxious type, and you want to work on how to help dogs with fireworks anxiety, you can work on desensitizing it to the sound of fireworks.
How to calm your dog during fireworks? Play the sounds of fireworks while playing with your dog. Pair it with its favorite treat and distract your dog with it every time it gets anxious. Start with a low volume and gradually increase it.
7. Consider Comfort Wear
Investing in a dog anxiety vest is one of the best fireworks’ dog tips. A thunder shirt helps calm an anxious dog through gentle pressure. If you don’t have one, you can even use a blanket or make one with an ace bandage or scarf.
8. Consider Anti-Anxiety Drugs
It is good to keep anti-anxiety medication on hand as a last resort if you still can’t figure out how to help dogs cope with fireworks. If your dog gets too anxious, it is better to administer medication before things get out of hand and your pooch hurts itself.
You can talk to your vet about over-the-counter medications and calming treats that you can give your pet.
9. Stay By Your Dog’s Side
How to help dogs with fireworks is as simple as keeping your dog by your side while the show is on. You are your dog’s best friend, caretaker, and so much more. Your dog trusts in you and feels safe and protected when you are around.
Being present at the time of the fireworks will give your pooch moral support and make it feel safe.
10. Talk To Your Vet
If your dog already has severe anxiety, you will need professional guidance. Apart from the anti-anxiety drugs mentioned above, your vet will also be able to prepare you for what to expect and how to react in certain situations. As your vet knows your dog personally, they will be able to give the best advice on how to calm your dog during fireworks.
Pet parents get worried about their pooches, wondering how to help dogs with fireworks. This is because many dogs get anxious and scared and even run away from their homes when they hear or see them. However, if you are alert and take a few precautions, you can help calm your anxious pooch.
If you are expecting fireworks, make sure your dog stays indoors, and try to insulate a room from outside noises. Do everything in your power, from creating a safe space to administering antianxiety drugs if necessary.
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