Holiday fireworks are here and you may be worried about your dogs' anxiety!
Symptoms of stress include pupil dilation, raised heartbeat, excessive panting, trembling, inability to settle, loss of appetite, and whimpering or whining, excessive licking, and pacing.
Many dogs will cope with their fear of fireworks by adopting one or more of the following behaviors:
- Seeking out dark cozy places
- Digging into the carpet
- Attempting to run away
- Hiding in the bathtub or closet
Tips for getting through the 4th of July safely and calmly
Most importantly, stay calm and relaxed yourself. Dogs are extremely sensitive to their humans' emotional states so it is important to remain calm while your dog may be freaking out. Your dog needs to feel safe with you.
1. Avoid taking yours to a fireworks display. Keep your dog inside, preferably with you, during the show. If it’s hot, make sure the air conditioning is on.
2. Create a safe place inside for your dog to retreat to. Some dogs will go to their crate if they are used to seeking comfort there. My dog used to find comfort in the bathtub. You can put a couple of items in your dog’s safe place, such as; their favorite toy, a t-shirt of yours that was worn but not washed so it has your scent on it.
3. Make sure your dog gets adequate exercise that day.
4. Keep the windows closed. Close the blinds if the flashing lights can be seen from inside.
5. Make sure your dog is wearing ID tags in case he/she tries to escape.
6. Take your dog out to potty before and after the fireworks.
7. Tactile support can be very comforting.
8. Canine Calm: https://earthheartinc.com/canine-calm/ is another effective product for calming your dog. Be sure to follow the instructions when using this product in case your dog is sensitive to essential oils.
9. Music is very effective for calming both your dog and you. There are quite a few youtube videos for free music to relax your dog. However, our favorite is Through a Dog’s Ear (less than $10 for the audio download) by Lisa Spector and Joshua Leeds - Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Volume 1. It can be purchased and downloaded immediately on their website so you can have it for Thursday.
Here is a quick video to learn more about music for your dog.
Why Does Through a Dog's Ear Music Work to Relieve Canine Anxiety?
10. CBD Oil has been shown to be effective in reducing anxiety in dogs.
However, speak with your veterinarian before choosing this method.
11. Bach Flower Essences are safe and effective for alleviating fear and anxiety in dogs. Rescue Remedy for Dogs can be purchased online or at Whole Foods. It is probably also available at other local natural food markets in your area.
12. There is also desensitization. I’m guessing it takes longer than 2 days to desensitize your dog so we will leave that for another time.
The original Anxiety Wrap can be found at: https://anxietywrap.com/
The thundershirt can be found at: https://www.thundershirt.com/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIo_jCxYiV4wIVkUgNCh00wAc1EAAYAiAAEgIhWPD_BwE
Some dogs respond the first time wearing the thundershirt while others don’t show significant improvement until 2-3 usages.
Nature’s Animals is not affiliated with nor does it endorse any of the above products. The content of this article and any linked material are presented for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or prescribing. Nothing contained in or accessible from this article should be considered to be medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or prescribing, or a promise of benefits, claim a cure, legal warranty, or guarantee of results to be achieved. Never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this article or in any linked material. Nature’s Animals is not affiliated with any veterinarian. Always consult with your veterinarian before deciding on a treatment for your dog.