How to enjoy fireworks: for dog owners

scareddog

More dogs go missing over Fourth of July weekend than any other time of year.  If you find yourself a fireworks enthusiast and animal lover, here are some tips to keep your pup comfortable and safe so you can enjoy the show.

 

Double up on play time throughout the day

During firework displays, dogs have a hard time orienting themselves; this is why so many tend to pull a magic act and disappear during 4th of July.  During the day, take your dog out as much as possible for some play time and exercise.  Deplete their energy as much as possible because the safest place for them when the show begins is indoors.

 

Create a small, safe space

Due to the noise of fireworks, most dogs get disoriented and will benefit from a smaller, quiet space to relax.  Some dog owners will put a blanket and pillows over their crate, a thick blanket over a coffee table, or even a pillow and blanket in a bathtub.  If none of these options work for you, pick a small room in your house (preferably a quiet one) and make it as comfortable as possible for your dog.  Close any blinds and curtains; the more of a barrier you can create between your pet and fireworks; the happier your pup will be.

 

Music therapy

Believe it or not, there’s music specifically composed to ease the anxiety of your pet.  Play the music a few times before the big day so they associate the music with feeling safe and calm.  Then when you have them in the blanket fort or room you’ve made up for them, start the music before the fireworks begin.  This will put your dog completely at ease and provide them with some noise to conceal the excitement outside.  If you’re interested in giving it a try, check out icalmpet.com.

 

Anxiety wrap & distraction

If your pup is a little on the skittish side when it comes to loud noises, consider a Thundershirt or anxiety wrap.  These doggy jackets apply gentle pressure and have successfully decreased noise anxiety in the majority of its users.  You can also try getting your pup a bone or treat to keep them happy, occupied, and distracted from the outdoor events.

 

Keep them company

If you have a friend or family member who isn’t heading out for fireworks, ask if they’ll keep your dog company.  Sometimes nothing can be as comforting as human companionship.

 

If you follow these simple steps, you’ll be able to catch some awesome fireworks without stressing about your pup at home!  And if you’re setting off your own show at home, be sure to clean up the yard of any firework remnants before letting your dog back out.  Remember, fireworks should be fun and stress free for you and your dog!

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