Tips to Prepare Your Dog How To Keep Your Dog Calm On July 4th of July
The fourth of July is a wonderful time of year, full of celebration and festivities. But for dogs, the fourth of July is the day where unexpected loud noises are rampant and brightly colored lights fill the sky. Needless to say; dogs don’t like fireworks. To help your dog stay calm during this eventful period follow these hints below. Mix and match and see if you can find ones that will suit your dog the most.
Before we get started, there are a few things to remember about a scared dog. Even though your best friend might look at your with understanding eyes, dogs can’t reason at the same level that people can. There are many people, adults as well as children, who are frightened by the loud noises of gunshots, cars backfiring, thunderclaps, or sirens, but we can reason their purpose and we understand that the noise will eventually go away. Dog’s brains don’t work the same way, and they get angry as well as scared when something new or loud unsettles them. It doesn’t take long for a fearful dog to become violent so take care if you can see that your dog might attack you or others.
1. Desensitization – Getting your dog used to the loud sounds of fireworks, gunshots, and sirens will help to lower the level of fear it will experience. There are audio downloads and CDs with these sounds on them that you can play for your scared dog. Start off playing the sound at a very low volume and keeping your dog with you. Repeat the exercise increases the volume. When you dog panics, pet it and reinforce the fact that it’s safe.
2. Fireworks sound louder outside the house, so it’s best to keep your dog inside during this time. Rearrange your dog’s schedule so that it goes outside to do its business well before the fireworks begin. A dog afraid of fireworks might relive its bowels or bladder because of the noise so try not to feed it too much before the fireworks are set to begin. Remember that accidents happen, so don’t scold your dog if it does.
3. A dog scared by environmental noises will instinctively retreat to a safe and small space. Come fireworks season, create a safe place for it to hide – crates are excellent for this. Keep your dog in an area that’s small and dark and away from windows.
4. A dog frightened by environmental noises and a dog scared by loud noises don’t normally make the best of friends. Dogs can become violent and panicked when they are scared, and they may lash out at each other. Surrounding your dog by furry companions might not be a good idea.
5. Make sure that someone is with the dog the entire time. A dog is afraid of or a dog frightened by fireworks needs love and support during this time. The fourth of July is also the time that the pound collects most of their runaways. If your dog doesn’t feel safe, then it might run away, so keeping someone with it will help to stop this. Also, make sure to keep all of its identification currents and on its collar in case something should happen.
By the way, do you want to learn more about ending your dog’s fear of fireworks?
We, humans, tend to be enthralled at the sight and sounds of 4th of July fireworks. It can be another story for our dog friends, who might even become aggressive out of fear and put themselves in danger by running into cars or through glass doors in an attempt to escape the loud noises.
Here is how to calm your pet so that both of you can, at last, enjoy Independence Day… together!
Firstly, and quite simply indeed, the best thing to do for your dog is to keep him at the best place possible on that night: your home. Your pet will feel more secure inside and will avoid the bright flashing lights, the squealing of children, and the overall general excitement.
Once inside be aware that the loud sounds still may affect your four-legged friends. You should close all doors, windows, curtains, drapes, and blinds to lessen the sound and avoid the flashing lights caused by the fireworks. If your house is well isolated your pet might not even hear the fireworks.
In order to attenuate all sound that might come anyway into your best friend’s ears, put on a relaxing CD such as classical music, birds sounds, noises of the Amazonian forest, etc. Apart from creating a peaceful atmosphere and covering the noises from outside, it will also produce a distraction for your dog and help to reduce his nervousness or anxiety. You can also distract your dog by playing with his favorite toys and giving extra undivided attention to him.
Staying indoors on the 4th of July with your dog while fireworks pop and crack is ideally the best thing you can do. If you can hear the fireworks never act fearful because your dog will interpret your behavior as a reason to be afraid. If your dog is behaving fearfully, do not anything to reassure your pet. Ignore your pet’s fearful behavior and act as though nothing abnormal is occurring outside. Just act normally and interact with your dog and other family members just like any other day.
If your dog does get nervous on the 4th of July notwithstanding all the efforts you have made to act as if there are not fireworks happening, then it is time to start an easy and fun training session. Use easy, basic commands that your dog already knows such as sit, shake hands, down, roll ever, etc. This will distract your dog from the external noises and force Fido to concentrate on the commands. Use yummy treats and verbal praise for each completed command or trick. Your dog will soon forget about any scary noises occurring outside.
If your dog has an extreme phobia of noises, you can ask your vet for light medications or even alternative medications that will help him relax through the situation and sounds triggering the anxiety.
Finally, if you are planning to take your dog with you to a 4th of July fireworks show, you should start desensitization right away. Download from the internet an environmental audio file that has fireworks sounds on it. Start off playing the audio at a very low volume. At the same time, do some games, play or training with your dog to keep him distracted from the audio sounds being played. Then, gradually increase the volume over the weeks or months, in such a way that your dog will barely notice the increase in volume. Continue to distract your furry friend while playing the audio. If your dog shows signs of nervousness, fear, or anxiety decrease the volume and proceed more gradually until your dog has become totally accustomed to the noise.
It’s a fact of life – dogs HATE fireworks. We can’t really blame them; a bunch of weird explosions in the sky, with no context or explanation, is pretty scary stuff!
All dogs’ worst day is around the corner. 4th of July, aka Dogpocalypse, is a terrifying time for canines. In fact, so many dogs go missing during the 4th that for most animal shelters, July 5th is the busiest day of the year, as volunteers spend all day trying to reunite lost pets with worried owners.
In hopes of keeping more dogs safe this summer, K9 of Mine has just released this new infographic on How to Keep Dogs Safe and Calm For 4th of July Fireworks
Take a look and let us know if you have any additional hacks for keeping your canine calm during fireworks!